Saturday, September 25, 2010

Signs of the Forest Exhibit

Here are some images of my piece, Naughty Knotty, at the Arena 1 Gallery, in Santa Monica.
Images include the progression and process of the work.

Naughty Knotty, is informed by the fact that I live in the city. The city is in fact a manufactured landscape, an urban environment.

During a walk through my neighborhood adjacent to Handcock Park, I encountered several redwood trees hundreds of miles away from their natural habitat. I was drawn to the rugged surface of the trees, which was a counter point to all of the concrete and asphalt surrounding me. My piece, Naughty Knotty, is a tree manufactured out of a single photographic image taken of a section of bark. The multi-shingled image of the bark echoes the experience one would have walking amongst a grove of redwood trees. Because of the scale you cannot see the forest through the trees. What you can experience is the tactile quality and the physical presence of the bark of the tree.

In Naughty Knotty, the use of printed cloth, transforms our notions of bark as hard and tough, the protective outside layer of a tree. The soft, pliable and lightweight qualities of the cloth express an idea of bark and tree as a gracefully draped feminine sheath. The formidable scale and girth of Naughty Knotty and the bold image of bark paired with the suppleness of cloth contradicts our perceptions of what a tree is supposed to be.

Process: I began taking photographs of trees, used photoshop to transform the photos for screen printing, screen printed over 450 prints in 2 colors, cut and sewed the single prints onto 5 panels. The under structure of the piece is created from PVC pipe, 3 tiers of hexagons held in place with poles. The cloth panels are attached to the structure with velcro.

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