The Sum of Its Parts – Part 1

“The Sum of Its Parts – Part 1” is built around the concept of individual works of art that champion the concept of holism: that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”, a philosophical observation recorded by Aristotle in his Metaphysica from the 4th century BC.

This first installment, “The Sum of Its Parts – Part 1”, features the work of thirteen artists from all over the country, each piece assembled out of components of narrative, context, scale and media. New and different works from each of these artists will be installed over each of the next three months (Part 1 & Part 2), providing the viewing audience with an evolving visual experience that encourages return visits for a complete visual experience that is also greater than the sum of the individual parts.

The Sum of Its Parts – Part 1 presents each artist’s unique approach to using “parts” in building a whole or complete visual experience as a central component of their artistic practice.  Each one of these artists has created a signature visual vocabulary that together address recent trends in contemporary art.

As a constellation of art objects, Sum of Its Parts – Part 1 leaves lot of open space in the installation, allowing each work to breathe and engage each other in a sort of active visual “conversation” for the viewer, a visual treat that again is greater than the sum of its parts.

Many of the artists in this exhibition are part of a resurgence of a hands-on process of object-making, which imbues this sort of artwork with the necessary investment of time and accrual of personal effort and experience.

The work on display ranges in scale from small paintings to a large installation, composed of many different but repeating elements.  Layered surface washes that create interwoven “narratives” on wood panel play off vitrified ceramic towers squatting on the floor.   The sum of this visual experience is more than the number of simple entities operating in one environment: together the art gathers more complex behaviors as a collective expression of contemporary culture.

A few of the artists in this exhibition incorporate extensive “hands-on” methods into their established aesthetic trajectories while others take a simpler approach.  Heather Hutchison from New York works with the available daylight to activate her minimalist wall pieces, while Laura Fritz presents a tall table that upon further investigation seems to contain all the components of an eerie sort of biological experiment.   Investing hours of her time and focused attention, Cyrilla Mozenter has hand sewn a delicate wall installation of little rough cotton pouches, representing multiple violent acts in her delicate piece “Hurt”.