Art Center's winning ARTIFACTS
by Susan Watt Grade
December 14, 2010
4 stars (out of 4)
ARTIFACTS is the shared winners' show for six artists who exhibited in the Indianapolis Art Center's regional exhibition, Art from the Heartland 2010, juried by Chicago art activist Paul Klein. Each was awarded an ample bay to display work: Indiana's Amy Brier, Chicago area artists Connie Noyes and Vera Scekic, Ohio-based artists Jim Shirey and Michelle Stitzlein and Wisconsin's Sonja Thomsen. These artists, Klein wrote, collectively touched on the definition of "artifact": something human-made (reused) or, "normally not seen until revealed by much closer examination."
The latter description was most thrilling to discover in works by Thomsen, Shirey and Scekic. Thomsen's time-lapsed photographic series, "Proscenium" – effectively displayed across a painted black stripe like a filmstrip – was shot looking through a draped picture window toward the Gulf of Mexico. Sit on the bench across from the photos and take a mind vacation by studying nuances of the passing light anchored by the horizon. Shirey's macro photography of flowers may seem the result of indoor studio slickness because of the definition of details, particularly dewdrops, follicles and stamen amplified in "Beard Tongue (P. Digitalus)." But interestingly, he composes outside using black matboard to set off flora in natural light before returning subjects to the field. Paintings by Scekic, such as "Splice," pulsate with almost 3-D color and form due to her technique of applying layers of paint on drafting film that is then cut and adhered to canvases.