Sunday, September 9, 2007

Guest Post by Pocket U. intern Audra Wolowiec

The show contains a variety of work from drawing and painting to
collage, prints, and photography. In a true democratic spirit, Austin
pulled the names from a hat, using a formula to choose an even
sampling of work from over 900 artists represented in the Pierogi Flat
Files. One would expect a muddled show of incongruous work, this is
not the case however. The show is strong and visually flowing. There
seems to be an overall theme of visual mapping where systematic
processes emerge. In a way, the pieces all exist as drawings. And
drawing is just that, marks revealing maps, interiors and movements.
Like little hidden worlds, drawing allows artists to work out what
can't always be worked out in real life. Paper allows us to defy
gravity. It allows us to dream.

With childlike urgency, Claudia Barthoi mixes stitching with paint and
pencil, drawing circles around legs and raindrops (perhaps teardrops?)
grappling with ideas of preservation and fleeting moments. Peggy
Cyphers uses a process of concentric rings meticulously drawn on mylar
overlaying two structures at once to reveal abstract biological growth
patterns. And Bill Gerhard, using the sun as drawing tool, exposes
black construction paper to form minimal shapes, a recording device
reminiscent of Olafur Eliasson's Sun Machines. And there are more,
from cubical desks to magic marker robots. How do I choose just one?

As I was closing shop, grabbing the padlock and keys, trying
desperately to narrow my decision, I noticed a small light coming from
the corner. A world within in a world. The most captivating work in
the show is the space itself, like a drawing, revealed from an
unexpected discovery. In trying to make sense of what is at our
fingertips yet just out reach, holding on the desire that things can
be different—a truly utopic idea.

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