February 12 – March 20, 2010.
This is an exhibition of mixed media artwork created with the intent of changing a book from its original form into a different form, thereby altering its meaning/intent. Some works in the exhibit continue to function as interactive books; other works, both two- and three-dimensional have become passive objects for display.
Altering books is currently one of the most popular creative techniques for self-expression. Beth Cote, one of the authors of Altered Books 101 maintains that ‘you don’t need any artistic ability to make altered books . . . if you’re color blind, memory challenged and can’t draw a darn thing to save your life, you can still be an altered book artist’.
Detail from Sara Furey’s Bottles to Sea pictured left
Due to the widespread popularity of the medium, and the abundance of altered book creations that address self-expression to the exclusion of anything else, gallery director Alicia Bailey stresses the importance of presenting contemporary work that is created with thoughtful regard to concept and execution, that makes a meaningful contribution to both the genre and to an individual artists’ studio focus.
pictured right Everyday Birds by Siobhan Martin
The juried portion of RE: was juried by Barbara Hale (Denver, Colorado) whose workis included in the exhibition. Hale is printmaking instructor at Metropolitan State College of Denver.
Her selections include work by Adina Weinand/Andrew Vomhof, (Minneapolis, Minnesota), Amanda Nelson, (Cambridge, Massachusetts), Ania Gilmore, (Boston, Massachusetts), Barbara WF Miner, (Bowling Green, Ohio), Cori Buder, (Denver, Colorado), Cynthia Colbert – recipient Topeka County Public Library Purchase Award, (Lexington, South Carolina), Deborah Bryan, recipient Gallery Director award (Johnson City, Tennessee), Haylee Ebersole, (Denver, Colorado), Jana Sim, (Chicago, Illinois), Jean Tock, (Carmel, New York), John Sager, (Austin, Texas), Jonathan Whitfill, (Lubbock, Texas), Jonathon Wiley, (Denver, Colorado), Julia Nelson-Gal, (Palo Alto, California), Katherine Reed, (Denver, CO), Margaret Whiting, (Waterloo, Iowa), Mary Jordan, (Denver, Colorado), Megan Moore, (Chico, California), Peggy Johnston, (Des Moines, Iowa), Sandy Toland, (Aurora, Colorado), Sara Furey, (Breckenridge, Colorado), Siobhan Martin, (Devon, UK), Susan Porteous – recipient gallery director Best of Show award, (Denver, Colorado), Virginia Unseld, (Black Hawk, Colorado) and Will Ashford, (Santa Rosa, California).
Douglas Stapleton is a curator and exhibition designer at Illinois State Museum’s downtown Chicago gallery. Stapleton holds an undergraduate degree in Anthropology and MFA in performance and installation from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He also works as a dramaturg/artistic for The Seldoms, a Chicago based dance company. It is no surprise that a result of such diverse interests results in a body of work that is visually stimulating and rich with cultural and historical reference. Michael Weinstein, writing for New City Art (Chicago), describes Stapleton’s collages as ‘rife with exuberant cultural play . . . Postmodern globalized melange reaches its limits . . . an unbridled romp through history’.
Stephen Daniel Karpik (SDK) is a self-taught and multidisciplinary contemporary artist currently living in Denver, Colorado. Utilizing encryption, symbols and motifs incorporating the influence of primal aesthetics, urban culture and the collective consciousness, SDK fuses aesthetic energy and colorful composition to create playful mixed media paintings. His contribution to RE: is an unbound abecedary featuring mixed media on library cards. The theme for this series is the abstraction of animals, each confined to its own letter in time and space.
Susan Goldstein is a Denver resident with a long and well-rounded exhibition history. In addition to annual solo exhibitions at Edge Gallery, the Mizel Center for Art and Culture hosted a sizable retrospective of her work in 2006. Goldstein will be exhibiting pieces from an ongoing series Intersections. Goldstein has great reverence for historic artifacts and documents and so allows herself to use only printed material already damaged or terribly common and not important enough to keep intact. By incorporating this damaged ephemera into her collages, these bits and pieces of the past are given new life and will survive in an altered form.
During the exhibition Abecedarian will be hosting an altered book workshop, taught by Judith Cassell-Mamet. Cassel-Mamet will assist students in turning a discarded book (provided) into a sampler of altered book techniques.