This spring, I worked with Etta and Aaron (both seniors in the printmaking department) to create our joint thesis show, entitled Fine Lines. Completing a painting thesis at Herron includes several elements: an exhibition, oral review, and paper; the pieces displayed at Fine Lines represent several years of (conceptual and visual) idea development. Creating this show helped bring together components of my art practice which I’d previously seen as separate and difficult to reconcile. It provided space to consider the works in relationship to each other, the typically unseen elements of my art-making process, and real people who interacted with them. In the end, this portion of the thesis work was simply an extension of the rest of my years of Herron – art as process, as teacher, as connector.
The photos / statements below recap the visual part of my thesis work as seen at our show, which took place on April 15, 2016 at The Oilwick.
Show Statement: Marietta Miller, Aaron Green and Lynnette Sauer’s thesis exhibition is a celebration of line in drawing, printmaking, and painting. The work is thematically varied but unified by their love of mark making. Fine Lines references the idiom “There is a fine line between x and y.” It is in the fragile in-between, the gray areas, that Marietta, Aaron, and Lynnette find inspiration for their work.
Above photos by Sean Yager.
Artist Statement: Lynnette Sauer, BFA Painting 2016
In seeking to better pay attention, the art principles of pattern and repetition emerge as useful tools. Much of our learning depends on the recognition of patterns – biological, aesthetic, mathematical, or otherwise. By pointing out things we may have missed the first or second (or third) time around, they help us to notice.
The body of work shared in Fine Lines tracks and presents repetitions as evidence of this. It takes advantage of the power of pattern for documentation, meditation, study, and the development of points of empathy by layering formal patterns with lived patterns of practice. As repeated linear elements form ordered compositions in drawing and painting, disciplines of returning to important words and of paying attention to life in the present tense offer grounding.
Conceptually, the work facilitates and records my process of learning to see – through books read, sketchbooks and journals maintained, paintings created, and connections discovered. The physical processes inherent in this art-making demand that embodiment accompany mental-spiritual presence. In the pieces which result, learning and embodiment overlap and prove relational.
Along with poet Sarah Kay, “I am stumbling in pursuit of grace”, and doing my best to pay attention while I do. I’m learning to see – details, color relationships, lines, and patterns that keep showing up and pointing to grace, not control, as catalyst of wholeness.
more photos: #finelinesattheoilwick on Instagram