The Maude Kerns Art Center is pleased to present Fresh Form, featuring the work of Gabe Duggan, Mayuko Ono Gray, and Sarah Nguyen, three artists who use or reference traditional art forms, while at the same time pushing the boundaries to create fresh, modern work. The exhibit opens on Friday, April 8 with a reception from 6 – 8 pm, and is on view through April 29.
Greenville, North Carolina artist Gabe Duggan pushes the expectations of traditional materials such as fibers through digital weaving. Working with a digital jacquard loom, Duggan produces woven images that are created both by hand and by data fed to the digital loom. In addition to many solo and group shows, Duggan has shown work in museum and travelling exhibits as well as in numerous public works displays.
Houston, Texas-based artist Mayuko Ono Gray combines traditional Japanese calligraphy with Western style drawings and materials, producing an unusual juxtaposition of abstract and representational imagery. For her striking graphite and charcoal drawings, she couples realistic, meticulously rendered images with a matching Japanese proverb to complement the image. The characters are intertwined to create a single line, which is enlarged, distorted, and twisted into tubelike forms. For Ono Gray, the proverbs “confirm the never changing characteristics of human emotions and behavior, providing timeless lessons and teachings.“ Ono Gray has exhibited her work in solo exhibitions and group shows throughout the US and internationally in Japan, Mexico, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom.
Columbia, Missouri artist Sarah Nguyen is a multi-media artist who works primarily with paper. Inspired by folklore, the natural world, and her observance of daily life, Nguyen uses traditional cut-paper style techniques in a scroll format on Tyvek, a nonwoven, synthetic material. The scrolls can be as large as 20 feet long and 4 feet wide. Combining both abstract and representational imagery, Nguyen “severs the connection between shape and meaning, connecting the viewer instead to the gesture of the cut of the knife, so the viewer becomes complicit in the art.” Nguyen’s work evokes, as she describes it, “memory, play, ritual, and the dissolving boundaries of waking life and dreams.” Nguyen has had numerous solo exhibitions and group shows throughout the US, including four solo exhibitions in 2021 alone.