Tonight for Collectors Art Night three of our artists from the current show will be here to lecture, Reni Gower, Jaq Belcher, and Lenka Konopasek and we are all very excited! But if you’re curious to learn more about the process and concepts of the illustrative artist Beatrice Coron, watch this video from her website.
Month: May 2013
As Guest Curator Reni Gower amalgamates the international works of seven diverse artists, concision and precision perform in the ancient art of paper cutting. With new and exciting twists, the laborious processes employed by these artists permeate a meditative and reflective quality. Such focus charges each piece with a narrative and metaphorical beauty.
In the exhibition, opening June 1st, Tinney Contemporary’s own Jaq Belcher reduces and repeats a single expanse of white paper. Through her contemplative cuts, Belcher gives texture to the smooth and shadows to the light with tags, or lifted areas.
Guest Curator Reni Gower evolves precision into intricate patterns, overlapping and interlocking motifs. Inspired by Celtic knotwork, Gower’s stencils float off the wall to expose the shadowing color of pink and blue, adding dimension and beauty to the exquisite design.
Next, in Lenka Konopasek’s Indoor Tornado II, an imposing tornado suspends from the ceiling, whirling down and impacting the neighborhood below it. The black and white cut paper emit an abstract chaos, while the details of cars and homes add to the destructive reality of a tornado.
As Michelle Forsyth continues with the motif of realistic disasters, May 5, 1958 presents the thistles that grow near a plaque that commemorates the planned explosion of Ripple Rock, an underground twin-peaked mountain in British Columbia. Her second piece, Edwin (Eyewitness) stands as a poetic passage she has found in old newspaper articles. The punched out text on a single sheet of white paper leaves “a lacey absence,” playing on the voided paper and chilling events.
Lauren Scanlon merges pages from paperback romance novels and floral bed sheet designs in work that was influenced by her grandmother’s fondness for both. The delicate handwork and veils of text suggest an intimate, yet innocent mood.
In contrast, Daniella Woolf takes mundane, utilitarian aspects of an ordered life and expresses them as a repetitive, streaming boats made of photographs and personal anecdotes. On a pedestal, an anonymous Japanese artist handcrafted a larger paper boat that holds the continuing motif of paper boats within.
Béatrice Coron uses Italo Calvino’s book Invisible Cities to portray his themes from his fictional world in her three black Tyvek squares. The stark contrast of the black cut Tyvek against the white wall creates a dynamic, if two-dimensional, shadow realm.
In light of recent events in Oklahoma, I thought it would be appropriate to address a piece in our new show, Shadow and Light, called Indoor Tornado II. This piece was installed in our gallery a week before the tragedy in Oklahoma, and was selected for inclusion in Shadow and Light long before then.
In this piece, artist Lenka Konopasek explores the sinister subject of natural disasters. Like much of her work on the same topic, the playfulness and accessibility of Indoor Tornado II combined with its subject matter results in quiet beauty. This piece is intended to raise questions about longevity, the consequences of human behavior, and differences in cultural and national attitudes. Even though the imagery is disturbing, its intention is to draw attention to concepts of beauty as it relates to violence.
Creating this piece must have been an arduous process. Its inclusion in Shadow and Light is an extreme coincidence in relation to the subsequent tornado in Oklahoma. Nevertheless, a portion of the proceeds from the piece, if sold, will be donated to the Red Cross for relief efforts. Come by the gallery to view it in person; you will not be disappointed.
Now on exhibit in the Kress Lobby is artist Wael Sabour. This Egyptian artist’s landscape-abstractions represent the essence of nature rather than it’s physicality. Working in the culturally diverse city of Alexandria, Sabour’s work reflects the fading technical borders between the disciplines of drawing, painting, and printmaking. In 2005, he received his PhD in Philosophy of Art and has gained international recognition as a recipient of the 1st and 5th 2012 ArtSlant Showcase. To learn more about Sabour and his oeuvre, click here.
Nashville-based artist Anna Jaap discusses her current body of work. The Resonance of Beauty will be on display at Tinney Contemporary until May 11, 2013. We will be hosting a closing reception on May 4 from 6-9 pm.
Whitney: What is a saral transfer and can you explain the process?
Anna Jaap: Saral transfer is a thin paper coated with graphite or a chalky color on one side. It’s typically used to transfer a design or drawing to another surface before being erased or painted over. I use it to create final drawing elements in the work. It removes the hand slightly from the work while still maintaining a physical connection to the surface. The line quality is delicate, but also purposeful. It has a wonderful elusiveness.
W: Where did you find the vintage wallpaper? Where did it come from?
A: I found it online, and thought I might use for collage. Vintage textiles and wallpapers have been a point of reference in my work for years, but I’ve always drawn and painted the patterns into the work. I love that art and life intersect there in an intimate way—in the clothes we choose to put on our bodies, and how we surround ourselves in personal spaces. It echoes my belief that beauty, however we each experience it, is vital to our well-being.
When the sample book arrived, I had no idea how I could use it. It sat for a long time. Then the idea for the drawings came, and they enchanted me— roses framed like specimens under a microscope, layering complex negative spaces on top of block-printed patterns, sending the paper forward with gentle irony as something new. And, of course, there was the connection to The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, a landmark piece of feminist literature. One of the things I’ve enjoyed most about these pieces is that they stir memories for viewers.
The paper is thick, but extremely fragile. I use one razor per cut when trimming the pages down for drawings. I’ve been parceling them out.
W: I noticed this recent work has a more subdued cold palette than previous. Can you please speak to the color choices and how it influences the subject matter?
A: I think it’s probably the reverse, that the subject matter influenced the color palette. In this case, I wanted associations with beauty as the focus. Vibrant colors could have easily taken center stage. A toned-down tertiary color selection creates a platform in a minor key that allows the viewer space to engage, and continues the idea of subjective relationships throughout the palette itself. There are subtle color shifts and balances in this body of work that unify a number of differing elements —very large and relatively small scale works, a variety of surface textures, painting and drawing, and some collage.
W: What are you exploring in this body of work? What ideas of beauty are you dealing with?
A: Beauty can be defined as “the quality present in a thing or person that gives intense pleasure or deep satisfaction to the mind.” It’s completely subjective. I choose forms, patterns, and themes in the work in large part because I find them to be beautiful. I wanted to bring that to the forefront, make it a focus, and explore it in a conscious way—like I would push the limits of a physical material like paint or charcoal.
I worked from a nature-based perspective of beauty (cultural ideas of beauty have been inspired by nature until fairly recently in history), and I turned up the volumes on the themes, pushing them as far as I felt could and still maintain an integrity in the work. So there are roses scattered in abandon across canvases and drawings, really luscious washes of color that reference the sky and water and land, elegant marks, and multiple layers of elements selected for their beauty. It’s an immersion, certainly—one that I hope sends the viewer away thinking about their own concept of beauty, and how it impacts their experiences.
W: How does the imagery of the rose play into the works?
A: Initially, I was drawn to the structure of it. Not only is it an iconic symbol of beauty, it has a powerful, spiraling symmetry that mirrors galaxies and tornadoes and any number of structures in the natural world. It’s also ambiguous— lovely and fragile, but wickedly thorny and notoriously difficult to grow. It’s the stuff of love and folklore, equally at home in a suitor’s bouquet or an arrangement to honor the dead. When I got beyond my concerns about roses being sentimental and overused, I found it a rich subject.
W: Can you explain the process of how you begin a piece? On average, how long does it take to complete a piece?
A: Sometimes I start with a concept, sometimes a material, sometimes with a color relationship upon which I want to elaborate. The drawing series began with an idea of continuing the narrative in the wallpaper. Two large-scale canvases ready to go now will begin with pouring and charcoal dust. Once the substrate is finished, then the composition and color palette will emerge as a response to the surface.
Completion times vary widely in the work. On average, I would say two or three months. I keep a number of works in process at once.
W: What is coming up next for you in your work? More of this same body of work or a new idea?
A: This body of work will segue into something new in short order. I have some ideas percolating about incorporating dry pigment, and pushing the scale more in the drawings on canvas. There’s always something new to explore in the work…I love that.