A collaborative, multi-media, multi-form, multi-dimensional “Evolving Installation” consisting of nine pigmented inkjet images (pinhole photographs) on 60 cm x 42 cm fabric panels, sewn to fabric veils and mounted with rope and rock; one acrylic painting on 5’ x 8’ hand-made washi paper; words cut from fabric, stamped with paint, and hung from cotton thread; one hand-made book of photography, writing, fabric, paint, and DVD.
VIOLET UNITY Takes Over the Kruglak Gallery
Grant Hier has again collaborated with artist Peggy Ann Jones to create the second installation of their project, Violet Unity, opening at the Kruglak Gallery on Monday, November 24 and running until December 4. Violet Unity is installation art that originally evolved from Jones’ 2005 Veil Project, a series of pigmented inkjet images on fabric (“fog panels”), each of which were sewn to a fabric veil and hung, weighted at the bottom with a rock tied by a rope. The ghostly veil sculptures—suspended from the darkness above and lit with bright white spotlights that cast varying opacities of shadow on the walls and floor—evoke or imply a presence beyond the forms themselves, and when they move with the breeze created by a viewer walking past, seem almost alive. Each viewer thus becomes an active part of the installation, literally walking through/amongst the art itself, and changing the experience by his or her presence—both through the motion and shadows cast.
To this Hier added text, single words cut from various white fabric, often tulle, some stamped with paints, then hung from white thread strung along the gallery walls or sewn behind the panels. The words themselves are barely noticeable: the fabric words legible almost solely by the shadows they cast on the walls, with additional words visible in luminescent paint, depending on the angle of light and one’s position amongst the fog panels. The entire effect seems to allude to the idea of shifting perceptions of reality, awareness, and meaning, and of varying levels of consciousness, as do the associations of the fabric/paint/shadow words themselves. Subtle violet light tinges the very tops of the panels, and a minimalist soundtrack, a sonic landscape composed by Hier in 7/8 time, floats from the darkness above. In one corner, a giant sheet of hand-made washi paper is suspended, to which Hier added paint and holes. The large washi panel is hung at an angle from the walls, creating a viewing space behind, where a one-of-a-kind book can be found, containing photography, poetry, and miscellaneous text, all of which further allude to the subjective nature of words/objects/signifiers and those ever shifting forms, as well as the shadows that they cast within the brain and from which one assembles meaning. When all of the individual elements are experienced together, Violet Unity simultaneously exists as a microcosm for the larger human experience. The installation can be seen as a metaphor for consciousness, and the space itself symbolic of one’s own internal world where experience, memories, and projections of the mind create a reality different than the external input being received (or of a greater reality unseen perhaps), yet all resonating with connections to a larger unified whole.
Unlike traditional art that is “viewed” and enjoyed regardless of venue, “Installation Art” such as Violet Unity is site-specific, experienced in a particular time and space such that the environment is a vital part of the art. However, Violet Unity is unique in that it exists as an “Evolving Installation” as well, taking different shapes depending on the light and space of the place where it is (re)constructed. Installed twice now in the Kruglak galelry, a possible future installation would be outdoors, perhaps on the grounds of the LCAD campus, where it would be hung and lit in an entirely different way, with different elements, and where the setting would add yet another dimension to the art and to the viewers’ experience and interpretation of it.