Nnenna Okore featured in Town Topics

In a new exhibition at the Hunterdon Art Museum, eight artists will show how the boundaries between paper and drawing, textiles, painting, architecture, and sculpture are dissolving.

 

“Transformed: Paper in Dimension” begins Sunday, May 19 with a reception from 2 to 4 p.m. that is open to all. The show runs through September 1.

 

Exhibition curator Carol Eckert notes that paper traditionally has been used as a ground: its flat surface a conduit to convey meaning by applying ink or pigment. But these works alter that:  the physicality of the paper itself becomes the means to transmit the content, its dimensional forms capturing light and reflection and reconfiguring space, Eckert said.

 

“The artists transform a simple and available material by cutting, weaving, folding, shredding, tearing, twisting, gluing, and sewing — creating multifaceted structures and intricate physical drawings,” Eckert said. “Blurring the lines between traditional disciplines, these artists create works that are often mutable in the ways they interact with particular spaces, energizing and influencing the environments in which they are installed.”

 

Light and reflection play critical roles in several of these works. For instance, Laura Vandenburgh’s For Now Clouds is a large wall piece in which hand-cut paper becomes the drawing itself, and reflected color from the backside of the drawing is incorporated into the composition.

 

Several artists respond to the environment through the use of repurposed papers. Nenna Okore focuses on transformation and regeneration though the use of old newspapers and magazine pages, her processes adapted from or inspired by traditional women’s practice, the African environment, and recycled waste.

 

Some of the artists utilize the structural properties of paper to reference infrastructure and architectural systems, others incorporate allusions to mathematical data. Still others evoke textile processes with a sensitivity to texture, pattern, color, and repetition.

 

Artists whose work appears in the show are Nancy Baker, Joell Baxter, Stephanie Beck, Jaynie Crimmins, Adam Fowler, Margaret Griffith, Wendy Letven, Nnenna Okore, and Laura Vandenburgh.

 

Eckert said one factor she considered when putting this show together was seeking work that interacted with the Museum’s space, so the exhibition includes floor and wall works, and elements that hang from the ceiling.

 

The Hunterdon Art Museum is at 7 Lower Center Street in Clinton. Hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (908) 735-8415 or visit the website at www.hunterdonartmuseum.org.