Sarah Marshall and Matthew Hopson-Walker
August 23 – September 19, 2015
Sarah Marshall Artist's Statement
Through my work, I explore the gulf between two experiences of the world; one presented daily to the senses, the other an unseen collection of belief, imagination, and memory. I position these experiences together not to resolve them but to consider the relationship between them. I seek to make visible the invisible; the spaces between objects and events, and our awkwardness in describing them, are the subtext of my work.
My prints and drawings reference the physical world through plant forms, animal forms, and the figure. Manipulated text, language, and translation suggest the complexities of human thought and behavior. Sometimes lyrical and sometimes abrupt, the work ranges from diagrammatic line drawings to elaborate, decorative elements. I cut apart and recombine source images, abstracting them through simplification, repetition, and layering. Layers may contradict each other or work together, linking the internal and external worlds.
Repetition is at the heart of printmaking, but my attraction to the multiple comes from the possibility of infinite variation as much as infinite repeatability. Forms recur in my work suggesting narrative or, simply, movement through time. This recurrence also shows how an image changes as it is transposed into different media. I am more concerned with similarity than with sameness, and a varied family of related images often replaces the edition in my studio practice.
Much of the work in this show explores flight as a metaphor for escape, belief, longing, and growth. The winged creatures that populate these images exist in a state of flux. As they change their skins, losing and gaining attributes, they demonstrate the fragility and impermanence of the self and the many ways we respond to our environment. The notions of "security" and "home" are new areas of conceptual exploration for me. I have begun drawing from security patterns on business envelopes, images of structural failure, and symbols of wealth and power to create narratives of individual triumph and disaster.
Sarah Marshall Artist Biography
The daughter of a reference librarian and a composer, Sarah Marshall grew up near Baltimore, Maryland. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Carnegie Mellon University in 1992 and, in 1999, her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Iowa. Influenced by interests such as language, reading and book objects, architecture, and biological science, Sarah focuses on the processes of printmaking and drawing. Her works on paper show organic forms that become portraits and characters; repeated in various environments, these characters examine our ideas about decision-making and the ways we treat each other. Sarah is currently employed as an Associate Professor of Art at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
Matthew Hopson-Walker Artist Biography
Born and raised in Fresno California, Matthew Hopson-Walker (proud owner of a very large rabbit) grew up reading comic books and dystopian science fiction novels. During a formative age he was exposed to movies such as Mad Max, Total Recall, Escape from New York, Blade Runner, and The Omega Man and many themes within them show up in his work.
After working as a janitor for several years he matriculated to the Kansas City Art Institute and received his BFA in Printmaking in 1998. After several years of playing in a heavy metal band and working at various liquor stores he then received his MA in 2002 followed by his MFA in 2003, both from the University of Iowa. In 2006 he was recipient of the James Phelan Award in Printmaking for California-born artists given through the Kala Institute.
Matthew Hopson-Walker is currently teaching printmaking and drawing at University of South Alabama. He has been included in over 100 juried and group exhibitions since 2006. His work is in the collections of the Franklin Furnace Artist Book Collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the University of North Dakota Art Collections in Grand Forks North Dakota, the Amity Art Foundation in Woodbridge Connecticut, the Stonehouse Residency for the Contemporary Arts in Miramonte California, the Drawing and Print Collection at the University of Iowa Museum Of Art, and the Tama Art University Museum in Tokyo Japan.