Explorations of Spirituality
Jane Adeney & Paul Roorda
July 14 – August 26, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday July 13, 7-9pm
Paul Roorda and Jane Adeney both use their art to explore the human experience of spirituality. Roorda examines the tension between traditional religions and the contemporary tendency towards a rejection of those traditions; Adeney is concerned with the human struggle for transcendence and the mind’s power of transformation. Both choose to work with found and collected materials that are laden with residual meaning, then enhanced with additional content through the imposed artistic manipulations and context.
In his artist’s statement Roorda describes his work and process as follows:
“Using ashes, gold leaf and discarded texts, the work … transforms traditional Christian art and ritual by creating ceremonial vessels, reliquaries and icons which reflect a neo-liturgical approach to the disposal of aged and damaged sacred texts. Deeply meaningful elements such as gold, eggs, fire and beeswax, are used in ways that transform the book and along with it our notions of the place of faith in society. This work pushes artistic technique and Christian ritual practice past their usual boundaries to create post-devotional, conceptual liturgical art. The art recalls religious acts of devotion yet, at the same time, points to the loss of what is held as sacred. Each creative work is also an act of destruction…. [and] draws attention to the absence of an authoritative ritualized tradition for the disposal of sacred text in Christianity…. in creating new rituals it fills a liturgical void with uneasy possibility.”
When describing her work Adeney has said:
“I am interested in the mind’s power of transformation: How does myth come into being? How does image become Symbol? In [my work] I consciously make use of the processes and imagery of artistic creation as metaphors for the nature of imagination and creation.
Over the past two decades I have been increasingly aware of the extent to which my artistic practice, in its forms, processes, and materials, has reflected my fascination with the rituals through which we strive to make sense of our human experience on this earth. The medium of clay, its forming and its firing, has long felt metaphorically charged for me as I work on the production of my work. This theme of transformation has therefore been a major subtext of meaning in everything I have done for quite a while.”
The powerful, thought provoking works of these two artists will transform the gallery into a contemplative yet intellectually charged space this summer.