Hanging in the Balance: New Work by Betsy Alwin
Exhibition Dates: April 2 - April 24, 2022
Public Reception: Saturday April 2, 7-10 pm
Special Events: Gallery Event on Saturday, April 23rd at 2pm.
Gallery Hours: Saturdays and Sundays, 12-4pm or by appointment
Free and open to all. Masks are required.
Hanging in the Balance
Lace ceramic tools embody demolition. Fragility confounds purpose. Architectural elements are precarious. Longevity is uncertain. Natural forms are contorted, enduring unnatural stresses, but may endure if they are forever changed.
What reckoning has the pandemic brought upon us? In our desire to return to normal or to the “before times,” do we manage to see that old reality differently? As we try to reach back through the looking glass, does the past feel unfamiliar? Is this strangeness actually hyper-awareness that we have woken up to?
I would be lying if I said making work during this time was easy. Even though lock-down presented the ability to be in the studio more, for a long time nothing I made satisfied me. It was like the experience of returning to a long-ago familiar place only to realize that, though it had not changed, it was not as you remembered it. I found some great satisfaction in tossing things out.
Always at the core of my work has been the desire to speak to the convergence of strength and fragility. The forms I make, the processes I use, and the materials I work with try to convey the beauty and absurdity of a bifurcated existence. It would seem that a global pandemic would be great fodder for inspiration; resilience in the face of adversity, heroic sacrifice, or progress in the service of overcoming challenges. However, what has emerged for me, in the precarity of this existence, is a reckoning with confusion and uncertainty, anger and loss, resolve and determination.