Anne Strand will exhibit new mixed media collages/paintings executed on canvases and hanging vintage patchwork quilts this March at Southside Gallery. Strand describes the exhibition, titled Shattered Silk, as a tribute to “icons of the feminine visage,” which “symbolize the artistry of the feminine eye as set forth in quilt form over the ages.”
Two quilts made by her grandmother and great grandmother inspired Strand’s new body of work. One won First Prize at the 1901 Tri-State Fair and the other, a silk quilt, now hangs in her studio. She describes both quilts as “subtle and beautiful works of art” and writes that although quilting wasn’t considered fine art at the time the quilts were constructed, that the women who made them “were certainly artists.”
Strand began her new series of work by collecting “pre-1930 quilts and quilt fragments that were deteriorating.” A collage artist and painter, Strand did no additional sewing or stitching to the vintage quilts or quilt fragments herself. Instead she collaged the fragments onto canvases and painted and collaged directly onto the hanging quilts. The mixed media works include materials such as Chinese spirit paper, paint, 20th century weavings and “eye like vintage or antique buttons.”
Shattered Silk marks a major evolution in Strand’s work. Strand, best known for her meditative abstract paintings, has not only begun to explore new media, but a new narrative has emerged in her work as well. The meditative quality of Strand’s past work carries over to the collages featured in Shattered Silk, but she also addresses feminism – a timely social and political topic to say the least – and the oppression of silence women often endure. Strand writes in her artist’s statement, “This exhibition celebrates the ‘quilt’, with all its complex layering and beautiful patterning, as a metaphor for creation – a visual blueprint unconsciously reminding us of the ‘greater design.’ Feminine forms and faces collected from different sources, ages, races and places are reproduced onto rag paper, lacquered and forged into the bodies of the individual works. By focusing on eyes with mouths separate or absent, Strand echoes the silence that often followed what was seen or experienced by women throughout the ages. These silenced faces underscore the theme by inviting the viewer to look beyond for rebirth beneath the brokenness or neglect.”
Anne Strand is an Episcopal Chaplain and retired psychotherapist. She formerly lived in Oxford, Mississippi, but now lives in Selma, Alabama. Strand studied art in Paris with Abstract Expressionist Elaine de Kooning, wife of 20th century art icon, Willem de Kooning. She holds degrees in Art, Theology and Psychology, and attended the New York Studio School. Her art has been exhibited in a number of galleries and belongs to many private and corporate collections. Her art has also been featured in a one-woman retrospective at the
Columbus Museum of Arts and Crafts, Columbus, Georgia. This is Strand’s fourth exhibition at Southside Gallery.
Shattered Silk will be on display March 6th – March 31st. An artist’s reception will be held Thursday, March 8th, 5 – 8 PM. For more information, please contact Southside Gallery, 662.234.9090.