Singing to the Difference: An Examination of Surface Strategies

An Examination of Surface Strategies

Guest Curators: Ruth Santee and TaVee Lee, Transmission Gallery

March 7 – April 5, 2024

Gallery Reception
March 7 • 5-7 p.m
Horton Art Gallery (Shima 144)

Gallery Exhibition Hours

Monday – Thursday • 11 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Friday • 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Saturday, March 23 • 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Horton Gallery will celebrate Women’s History Month with an exhibition of six established women artists and two women guest curators. Horton Gallery Coordinator, Jan Marlese, would like to recognize that the make-up of an all-women’s show is not typical of the larger museum and gallery industry. In addition, the artwork in the exhibition does not necessitate a focus on women’s “issues” but rather the making of non-objective art and its formal qualities, as reflected by its title, An Examination of Surface Strategies.

The exhibition guest curators are Professor Ruth Santee, who teaches Color & Design and Printmaking at Delta College and is the co-founder of Transmission Gallery in Oakland, and TaVee Lee, Transmission Gallery Manager. Exhibiting artists are Cheryl Coon, Leah Korican, Lori Murphy, Jann Nunn, Celena Peet, and Adero Willard. 

Guest Curator Ruth Santee states, “Texture enriches a surface. It engages our sense of touch and tactile exploration. We are drawn to it as an important component of learning. Texture in art cannot always be physically experienced. The viewer must explore the art surface with their imagination. Whether the artist has created real tangible texture or simply the illusion of texture, it all contributes to the emotional impact of the viewer.”

Singing to the Difference is attributed to the work of the same title by exhibiting artist Lori Murphy. Following is an excerpt of selected text from her Artist Statement, Transforming the Canon, where Murphy reflects on her series of work that dismantles and reassembles pages torn from the book, Metropolitan Seminars in Art by John Canaday.

Murphy states that she was “interested in altering [Canaday’s] narrative, writing new stories over the old—breaking down this vintage canon of art history from the 1950s and reworking it to my own liking. I ripped out pages then reassembled the parts until they spoke some truth to me. At first, I hand-sewed the disassembled pages together with thread. Stitching referenced ‘women's work’ and I metaphorically mended history. My discovery of staples to fasten the fragments together significantly shifted my visual language. Not as gentle or delicate as thread, the seductive metallic staples referenced armor or weapons. Bumping up against and responding to these art history books has been insightful. Thinking about the artists represented, I wonder about those overlooked or not included.”

Women’s History Month: Women Working in the Arts

Exhibiting Artists:

(Click on photo/name for more information and details.)