april through may
Suzanne Koett, John Mulvany & Cherie Weaver
- opening reception: friday, april 6, 7-9pm
- exhibition dates: april 6 - may 6, 2012
Memento mori is a Latin phrase translated as "Remember your mortality.” It refers to a genre of artworks that share the same purpose: to remind people of their mortality, an artistic theme dating back to antiquity. While the show will encompass this idea it will also push the term to look at death as necessary companion and active agent in the pursuit of living well. This exhibition features photography from Suzanne Koett, painting by John Mulvany and mixed media works by Cherie Weaver.
In The Study of Aloneness, photographs are arranged into small series. Each series is an unconventional visual journal depicting what aloneness looks like and shows what it’s like to have a relationship with the self. Each series touches upon the elation and freedoms as well as the struggles in having to face oneself when experiencing aloneness.
When aloneness and renunciation is accomplished, identity no longer matters. Within each series, the stripping down of identity is depicted so that the imagery gives way to being universal. In each study, the subject gets closer to becoming no one, which is sequentially the most relieving condition of being alone. The deeper into aloneness one goes ultimately paves the way of losing and unraveling the false identity created over a lifetime. The minimal and simplistic compositions support the idea of forced self-awareness and challenges, the behavioral patterns of avoiding oneself through external distractions.
Ghosts have maintained a presence in art from ancient times. From pre-historic cave paintings through to our present uneasy times, artists have used the transcendental figure to explore ideas of an inner life and to make visible the mystical and metaphysical. Although the idea of the human soul was sometimes symbolically or literally depicted in ancient cultures as a bird or other animal, it was widely held that the soul was an exact reproduction of the body in every feature, even down to clothing the person wore.
My recent work explores loss of faith - in governments, religions, institutions and the current waves of anxiety and uncertainty about the future. With influences ranging from Mexican retablos to 14th century devotional painting and early spirit photography my work references ways in which art from the past has documented and reflected dramatic upheavals such as the mythology of the American West, the Destruction of Pompeii, and the Great Depression.
John Mulvany is originally from Ireland who lives and works in Austin Texas. His work has been shown in Ireland, the UK, Germany and the U.S.
Cherie Weaver was born in Marshalltown, Iowa in 1964. At age 26, Ms. Weaver moved to Iowa City, fell in with an effervescent tribe of heady creatives who introduced her to the work of Eva Hesse, Joseph Bueys, Hélène Cixous, Henry Darger & Maya Deren.
For seven years, she lived quite happily on a lean diet of beat poets, language-obsessed philosophers, espresso and French new wave cinema. Ms. Weaver continued this conversation at the College of the Atlantic before moving to Austin where she now thrives and enjoys the pleasure of your company.
She practices art to participate in the universal dialogue of electrical exchange and articulate the joyful fascination of living among so much sentience, mystery and grace.