This month the Harrison Gallery presents Paper Route, a group show celebrating the versatility of paper.
Let’s begin with a simple question. What is a work of art? Consider a watercolor painting on paper as an example. It is often our tendency to focus on the brilliancy of the artist, his or her purpose for creating, and the completed piece itself. What we often fail to realize is that an entire conversation took place between the artist and, in this case, the paper to bring the piece to fruition. In the end, as the work hangs in the art gallery, the only remnant of this conversation is a label that simply reads “watercolor on paper,” and is much the same as the “The End” frame at the conclusion of a fairytale.
The point here is that we, as the viewers, are oftentimes satisfied with the ending and forget all about the whole narrative of the piece. We don’t consider that as the artist seeks to create, the paper is continually agreeing and disagreeing with the artist’s process, and that it is only when both parties reach a consensus that the next step in the process can begin. This story is full of time and struggle, but the result is something delightfully unique, and set apart in a sort of versatile newness. And when viewed in the midst of the work of other artists who conversed with the same medium, the uniqueness of the creativity, and the versatility of the medium truly shine.
Paper Route, which features the creative conversations between paper and artists Heidi Jensen, Christina Hollering, Erin Huber, Minda Douglas, Danielle Rante, Dominic Senibaldi, Lauren Kussro, Christa Roby and Lorie Lee Andrews demonstrates the wonderfully varied results of the creative conversations between artist and medium.