Curated by Joyce Brienza
August 31-October 15, 2016
Reception: Friday, September 9, 7-10 pm
Gallery Talk: Saturday, September 24, 2 pm
JOYCE BRIENZA | COCO BRUNER
SUE CARMAN-VIAN | LYNN GALBREATH
We are a group of artists and friends who have in common an interest in the idea of drawing as end point rather than merely a preparatory act. We are in love with drawing as a direct, no tech and un-electronic media. We see the pencil in some ways as an instrument of nostalgia, recalling the Renaissance quest for virtuosity. Our work ranges from narrative to abstraction but there is a conceptual bent towards popular culture that questions the separation of fine and applied arts.
JOYCE BRIENZA | Physicists are researching the concept of the universe as a hologram. This theory postulates that the material world is not as solid as it seems. Instead, it is more like a hologram – vivid, but empty at the same time. Trungpa Rinpoche expresses the paradox as “everything you see is vividly unreal in emptiness, yet there is definitely form. What you see is not here; it’s not not here. It’s both and neither. Buddhism also advises us to “regard everything as a dream.” In my work, I would like to manifest this idea of space.
In dreams and memories fragments are all we have to make up the whole. I work with images the way a DJ samples music to create my own brand of visual hip hop. By employing a collage technique, the works are constructed of layered and juxtaposed elements drawn from multiple sources that possess a particular personal and / or social significance. Among these sources are still life objects, toys, atomic structures, old master works, family photographs etc. This recontextualization of images is a conduit for the generation of new meanings.
Pattern is a critical element and serves multiple functions. It is a reference to traditional “women’s” handiwork and questions the duality of high and low art. It provides a grid formation that connects the floating elements (information) together. And finally, it works to disrupt the continuity of the image, placing roadblocks in the way of purely logical solutions.
At first glance the work may appear as a collection of elements that have no definable meaning. However, upon careful observation, the works tell a story of resonance without beginning or end.
COCO BRUNER works in several media including drawing painting, sculpture, photography and video. In these drawings she manipulates the illusion of space and light to explore connection, disconnection, and interaction. In a reflection of human relationships, her drawings question the decision-making process itself. Each drawing begins with as spontaneous a gesture as possible. What follows is navigation between control and impulse, the known and unknown. It’s a bit like hitchhiking. You take a risk, not knowing where you’ll arrive, but you’ll probably learn something.
Coco earned an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and has exhibited work in Michigan, Illinois and New York. She has worked in public television, taught at the Center (College) for Creative Studies, and produced educational, promotional and documentary videos. In 2013 she received a Kresge Visual Arts Fellowship.
SUE CARMAN-VIAN has had a thirty-year career as a painter, performance artist and film and video maker. She received an MFA from Wayne State University in 1984. She received the Michigan Council for the Arts Grant in 1986 for the Public Billboard Project, and was an award winner in the Ann Arbor Film Festival in 1991. Sue has written, directed, produced and performed in nine productions from 1984- 2008. Some of these productions were sponsored by Marygrove College. She has written, directed, produced and performed in eleven films/videos from 1986-2009. Most films were made in conjunction with her performance art pieces. Sue has exhibited in numerous one and two person exhibitions and many group shows from 1986 to the present. She has taught performance art at Wayne State University and Marygrove College in Detroit, MI. Since 2010 she has collaborated on a public arts billboard project and continues to perform her pieces in group performance events.
Lynn Galbreath I am born to create and cannot function on a daily basis without making something. I create to communicate. To me, art is the conversation we’ve been having since the beginning of time; the one that’s always probing the human condition. Political and social issues; what it means to create art in the 21st Century.; what it means to teach fine and applied art in 21st Century.; and what society does and does not value — seem to be ongoing topics. I paint, make multi-media three-dimensional pieces, and draw. The shape, form, style, and medium I use are reflections on what it means to be human in an ever-growing digital, technological age. I consider the act of drawing a way of seeing and understanding life in a clearer, more complete manner; therapeutic, thought-provoking, cleansing.