Art Gym Denver is excited to announce Narrative Threads, an exhibition of works that utilize thread to form a narrative throughout the art displayed. This exhibition is curated by Art Gym member and Director of Abecedarian Artists’ Books, Alicia Bailey, and includes a roster of artists from across the country.
Narrative Threads features works that expertly combine the narrative and the tactile. The wall pieces, installations and books included all have narrative in mind, making use of thread and fiber-based materials to share that narrative. From ‘Migration,’ an artist book by Margo Klass which uses abstracted collage made of paper and salmon skin to discuss the process of Alaskan salmon migration patterns, to ‘Take a Piece. Leave a Piece’ by Art Gym member Katie Vuletich, which investigates the homelessness narrative through wearable art based on interviews the artist conducted with young people who experience homelessness. The exhibition looks at the entire spectrum of how thread and fiber are able to communicate a narrative to a viewer/reader.
This does not, however, mean that the narrative is at the forefront of each piece. In many of the works, the narrative elements step back and let the tactile nature of the works shine. Curator of the exhibition, Alicia Bailey, said concerning this, “Regardless of physical scale or structure, the selections invite the reader/viewer in for a tactile, hands-on experience that is engagingly intimate . . . even those not meant to be handled, tempt the viewer to touch their surfaces, enlivened as they are by the sewn line and texturally dynamic fibers.”
Alicia Bailey is a Denver based artist, curator and gallerist. She is the director of Abecedarian Artists’ Books and Ravenpress. She made her first artist book in 1996, and since then has developed an artistic practice focusing on handmade books and box works. Bailey describes artists’ books as “unique, interactive sculptures realized in the form of the book.”
Join us for the opening reception of Narrative Threads on Thursday, September 6 from 5 – 8PM as well as a curatorial talk with Alicia Bailey discussing the process of creating and curating the exhibition on Wednesday, September 12 from 6 – 8PM.
Exhibits are free and open to the public Monday through Friday, 9AM – 6PM. They will be on display from September 6 through September 28, 2018. Alicia Bailey’s curatorial is also a free event.
"September 11, 2001," an unbound artist book was recently purchased by and is now in the collection of Wells Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.
David Borawski, Carla Rae Johnson, Rita Valley
Flat File Feature Artists Patricia Dahlman, Gil Scullion
Dates: June 1 - July 1, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday, June 1, 6-8 pm
OPENING RECEPTION: Friday, June 1, 6-8 pm
HANDWRITING THE CONSTITUTION
with Morgan O'Hara
Sunday, June 17, 2-5 pm
ARTIST'S TALK: Sunday, July 1, 3:00 pm
Story Telling Performance with Suzanne Benton 4:30
You can trust a curmudgeon. They're some of my favorite people. Deep down, they're tender-hearted. Gruff, stoic, humorous, and empathic. With pencil, sewn materials, kitsch, and word play our curmudgeons explore unlikely materials to deliver their message.
Sept. 17 — Jan. 7, 2018
Intimate Lines: Drawing with Thread, curated by Carol Eckert
In Intimate Lines: Drawing with Thread, 16 artists wield a needle like a pen to compose intensely personal stories and record intimate histories.
In this upcoming Hunterdon Art Museum exhibition, which opens Sept. 17, artists deal with relationships, gender and identity; their works show exquisite textured drawings that expand upon textile traditions to make compelling contemporary statements.
“Stitching is an intimate physical act, closely connected to the body,” said Carol Eckert, who is curating this exhibition. “An often solitary process, it is at once time-intensive, relentless and contemplative. The artists in this exhibition create works that are inextricable from the process itself — intensely personal figurative images drawn with tangible stitched lines.”
Using thread as both a tactile and symbolic medium, these artists approach the traditionally painstaking process of embroidery with a modern sensibility. Building upon historic textile processes and working within the tradition of figurative imagery, they create dialogues between old and new — dialogues intensified by the use of found embroideries, vintage postcards, old photographs, and paper maps.
Viewers will also discover everything from the history of textiles and traditional toile patterns to modern pop culture references to comic book heroes and selfies.
For instance, artist Richard Saja employs traditional toile patterns – toile is French for cloth, and today refers to a one-color print typically of a pastoral scene or arrangement of flowers – and interrupts them. He’ll embroider, say, wings on a monkey or ladybugs on a flower.
Kelsey Viola Wiskirchen incorporates Latin American needlework practices and the women she has met and the stories they told are represented in her work. “My purpose as an artist is to examine the experiences women share: stories, skills, and traditions passed on to younger generations,” Wiskirchen noted.
Regarding contemporary references, Sophia Narrett’s work is drawn through pop culture references, whether it’s the television programs The Bachelor and Orange Is the New Black, or rapper Kendrick Lamar. She has three pieces in this show, including “I Can’t Stop Crying Except Sometimes When I Think About Ari Gold,” a reference to the character portrayed by Jeremy Piven in the TV program Entourage.
Eckert said Narett’s complex, colorful narratives were developed from her background as a painter. “Hand-stitched with vibrant cotton threads, her expressive compositions referencing pop culture and social issues float slightly off the wall, casting shadows that emphasize their three-dimensional qualities,” Eckert said.
Diem Chau, whose figurative images are stitched across porcelain vessels, creates delicate vignettes of fleeting memory, gesture and form, resulting in works that combine an egalitarian sensibility with a minimalist restraint. Her work touches
on the value of storytelling, myths, and how those connect us all.
And, while most of the show’s artists use hand stitching, Paul Nosa works with a
solar-powered sewing machine to construct intricate narratives that often include map imagery.
Also featured in this exhibition are artists Pinky Bass, Mary Bero, Patricia Dahlman, Michelle Kingdom, Daniel Kornrumpf, Aurora Molina, Mark Newport, Iviva Olenick, Stacey Page, Ehren Elizabeth Reed and Melissa Zexter.
Intimate Lines: Drawing with Thread’s opening reception is Sunday, Sept. 17 from 2 to 4 p.m. It runs until Jan. 7, 2018.
This exhibition is generously supported by the Coby Foundation, Ltd.
An online exhibition of art work by twenty artists
Katherine Aoki, Deborah Harris, Nicolas Lampert, Cicely Cottingham, Art Hazelwood, Ilse Schreiber-Noll,
Priscilla Stadler, Tim Fite, Anne Q McKeown, Anne Dushanko Dobek, Robyn Ellenbogen, Joseph O’Neal,
Donna Coleman, Robert Geshlider, Michael Dal Cerro
Leona Strassberg Steiner, Barbara Madsen,
Ray Must, Carol Radsprecher and Patricia Dahlman
Picturing The Garden State (Now)
"Big Open Book"