Mining the Collection: Evidence of Life
June 10- August 29, 2014
Guest Artist, Marianne Lettieri
This summer, we have enjoyed hosting Bay Area visual artist, Marianne Lettieri. Lettieri earned her MFA in Spatial Arts from San Jose State University, and BFA from University of Florida. Lettieri also serves as Vice President of CIVA (Christians in the Visual Arts) and is founder of Arts of the Covenant, a group for artists in the San Francisco Bay Area who are interested in the intersection of visual art and faith. She is a member of the Pacific Rim Sculptors Group and the International Sculpture Organization. Her recent exhibitions include: By Mainly Unexpected Means, Meridian Gallery, SF, Poetics of Disposability, Triton Museum of Arts, Santa Clara, Changing Context, Azusa Pacific University, and Dark Inheritance, Palos Verdes Art Center.
Q: In your work, you often use everyday objects you described as, “artifacts that people keep and eventually discard along with the memories that are embedded in them”. Could you describe what role memory plays in your work?
A: Although I often use materials with family history, I am not necessarily interested in their personal histories. Mostly, I’m interested in the collective memories of visitors. The objects chosen for this show represent everyday professions, and therefore embody the past of unknown individuals. My work process is similar to how archaeologists use artifacts to discover material traces of people and what important roles they played in their life’s history.
Q: You use found objects as medium of choice in this show. When did you first decided to use found objects?
A: For me, the past becomes real when I look at an object that shows the evidence of time. Used and worn, each object conveys memories of people I have known in the past; it is a way for me to remember them. Reliquary is a piece of work, which reflects an individual’s past, almost embodying their spirit. I want to run away from found objects, but I keep coming back to things that reflect the past! I sometimes use materials that are interesting in themselves because they are considered antiques, through the art making process however, I transform them into something extraordinary. Because my aesthetic is the cast-off, tattered, and torn, my intent is to bring the voice of the objects alive and present them as their own.
Maker Reliquary, 2014
Q: Many items in this show are traditionally used by women. Is there a message concerning the traditional work of women in the home?
A: When an artist uses objects of domesticity, it is difficult to ignore issues of feminism. In this show, I reference work of all kinds, of both men and women. If I’m making a feminist statement at all, it is to honor traditional women’s work. I believe my generation made the error of developing a hierarchy of work for woman. I believe the work ethic and idea of people using their hands to make a living for themselves is advantageous. Currently, I’m working on a series of children’s toys, which are devoted to an adult’s occupation. The strangeness of giving children ways to take care of them, their homes, and communities speak volumes.
For more information and upcoming exhibitions, please visit www.care-gtu.org
-Lily Manderville, Programs Manager
Center for the Arts, Religion, and Education | Doug Adams Gallery