Pieces of the Whole, Selections from Arrowmont’s Permanent Collection will be on exhibit in the Sandra J. Blain Gallery from November 7, 2015 through January 8th, 2016.
Whether for functionality of the piece, to communicate ideas, or for aesthetic power, the artists highlighted in this exhibit have utilized “the multiple” in innovative ways. Many of the pieces in this exhibition couple a unifying format with variation in surface, scale, or color to create compelling iterations or sequences. Examples are Anne Boynton’s geometric screen-printed quilt, whose black and white compartments are similar enough to look cohesive but offer subtle variations to the observant viewer. Arrowmont’s former Executive Director and for whom the gallery gets its namesake, Sandra J. Blain’s ceramic piece, Curbside Environments, makes use of nine curved, slab-made “curbs,” stacked vertically on the wall to create a towering abstraction of form and texture. Other singular works explore compositional cohesion through use of a repetitive form, like Dennis Siporski’s haunting photograph, Pointing Boy. Siporski emphasizes the curious gesture of the boy as he stands in front of a somber stone procession. Other artists construct surprising emotional relationships between serial objects. Christian Burchard’s organic Black Gourds, becomes anthropomorphized through its familial-like gathering. Through repetition, these artists have pushed the boundaries of their chosen medium- they have created a wholeness through the careful manipulation of multiple parts.
Arrowmont’s permanent collection includes nearly 1,000 works in a variety of arts and crafts media, including fiber, ceramics, wood, metals, and mixed media work. Made by the hands of current and past Arrowmont instructors, individuals from the settlement school’s days, and past artists-in-residence, the works represent the arts and craft school’s history, present, and future.