Does Size Matter?

12 Nov

Last Tuesday I went to the opening of the Jacob Lawrence Gallery’s 2D + 3D juried show: Does Size Matter? I love the intimate environment of the Jake, and being able to see such varied work of UW artists put together in an interesting, coherent way, was really great. Over the course of last week I went into the Jake a couple times to investigate the makings of a juried show. It was quite a process involving a lot of work and it was interesting to see how far the crew there, Kris Anderson and his interns, had come each time I went back. I talked to a few artists dropping off work to hear their thoughts. I was surprised at the range- one junior DX Arts major had never submitted art for judging or exhibiting before, whereas I talked to a grad student who had been entering in various “contests” for many years. I know personally it can be intimidating to submit one’s artwork, and I was encouraged to see the array of experience and diverse media. It was additionally exciting to have Sylvia Wolfe, director of the Henry, come to jury the work.

In tying together the pieces she chose, Sylvia Wolfe writes: “It was a pleasure and a privilege to view the range of work submitted by UW students to the current Jacob Lawrence Gallery exhibition. Given the quality and variety of objects, it was difficult to make a selection. As I looked, however, a quasi-surreal sensibility and Gothic treatment of subject matter emerged as common threads. From Kyle Van Wieringen’s color photograph of a surveillance camera overseeing on overgrown courtyard to Kate Clark’s three-dimensional “Shared Breathing Device,” things are not quite what they seem. Of the works chosen, some demonstrate a command of materials; others display artistic promise or a willingness to take risks. But all reflect a highly subjective treatment of the outer world and hint at the complexity within.”

Tuesday night, awards were also handed out not only recognizing the winners, but also presenting them some cash. I was able to hear some of the winners discuss their works. One of the winners, Karen M. Orders, talked about her two manipulated black and white photographs Table in Ballroom and Door in Ballroom. I was impressed with her pieces, and certainly see how they tie into the “surreal” theme present in the gallery. Her artwork plays with the idea of putting something old and worn into a formal and beautiful place, the used object is then displaced- or is it the other way around? Her works also investigate themes of beauty and aesthetic standards. Perhaps the rotting door is the beautiful piece.

Here are some photos courtesy of Keena Bean from Tuesday. Hope you get a chance to stop by; the exhibit will be up until December 5th.


Gustavo Martinez’s Untitled stoneware
Chris Layman’s Ceramic Foot ceramic


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