Last night was the annual membership drive for the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art. It is the only event that is restricted to current members and was very well attended. I sit on their advisory board but am currently on hiatus until I finish this commission. Members were entertained by a live cuban band, food and drink as well as the inaugural exhibition Work v. / Work n. by the collage and assemblage artist Aldwyth. I didn't have the chance to attend the opening of the exhibit (I was in Atlanta) but was told by many that the place was packed to capacity. It was the largest opening in the history of the Halsey with over one thousand in attendance.
I had a chance to finally study Aldwyth's work (a feat in itself). It is somewhat hard to describe. The best I can do is relay to you some text from the official catalog:
"She creates astonishingly complex collages and assemblages that recall the fantastical intricacies of Hieronymus Bosch. The exhibition subtitle, Work v. / Work, n., is intended to illuminate the idea that work is both a verb and a noun, and highlights the word's alternate definitions. Aldwyth's collages are often epic scaled. The viewer should be prepared for a trip through time and space. They are packed with intricately fashioned episodes, they seem like worlds that lie outside of our world, and infinitely worth exploring. To do so, however, one must turn into a viewer of cities from space, an ant crawling on a blanket."
One of the highlights of the night for me was discovering my name embedded in one of her works titled 'Document'. It's a disassembled / reassembled index of art and artists by Canady and Janson from the 1950's amended with names of artists she considers notable and scribed in pencil. I was discussing the piece with my wife and she half jokingly asked why my name wasn't included in the text. After looking to see where my name would have been had I been bestowed the honor of being included, lo and behold, there it was.
Needless to say, I was shocked (click on the image to see it larger). Thank you, Aldwyth! To see more of her work click here. Anyone interested in becoming a member and supporting one of the finest contemporary art centers in the southeast, click here.