Artists by nature are not hard-wired to boost, promote, or sell their work. Buyers usually want to know more about the works that attract their attention and perhaps purchase. That more can be the backstory, the technique or inspiration, and it is often said that it is not the work that is sold but the story that is bought. For some artists, that conversation is difficult. In my own artist practice, all of this is the case. If I could bring that story to life in conversation, there would be no need for me to make a drawing, photograph, artist book or ceramic sculpture. I came to value (and now miss dearly) art school critiques because I learned how to speak more confidently about the backstory, techniques and inspiration in my artist practice. Having said that, this blog feels somewhat like shameless self-promotion, but it could also be a year end summary about where my work can be found, where this work can be purchased.
South Main Gallery (279 East 6th Avenue, Vancouver) now represents my work, particularly More Illuminations, featured in Vancouver’s Capture Photography Festival (2016).
Cityscapes Art Rentals (335 Lonsdale Avenue, North Vancouver) holds a small collection of my work for rent, rent-to-own, and purchase. A selection of my work will be in the 2017 Art Rental Show (opening 12 January through 04 February 2017).
The Brooklyn Art Library (28 Frost Street, Brooklyn, NY)/ Sketchbook Project now sells high quality prints of pages from nine of my sketchbooks in their collection. Sketchbook Collection
Gifting is an art form in its own right, and in this season of gift giving, a gift of art is a double gift because it gifts the artist as well. More about my photography continues at http://www.sassamatt.com
Telling Stories: a visual art exhibition, a new exhibition presented by the Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Vancouver in collaboration with the BestB4 Collective, opens at the On-Tak Cheung Gallery at the Chinese Cultural Centre Museum on Saturday, 07 November, 2015 from 2 – 4pm.
This new BestB4 Collective project is a collaboration with nine visual artists and community members; the gallery is transformed into a meeting place where photography, painting, ceramics, fibre and installations tell and evoke stories. Salton Sea Eco-Disaster — I Cannot Look Away, my Salton Sea photo-graphic story, will be on show in this exhibition.
In the Winter of 2011, I made my second photo-exploration of the Salton Sea in Southern California to continue my study of the environmental impact of the local economy on the region and am now working toward a return to the area for a future photographic project. This eco-disaster is complex: as this salt lake dehydrates, the toxins from the Mexicali-Calexico food industry and computer industry contaminants concentrate, which in turn kills the fish, birds and plant life. As a result, the shore of the Salton Sea is ringed with layers of dead fish and birds; the stench of dead marine life hovers over a series of ghost towns built with the intention of a recreational paradise in the desert.
My work in this area has only begun. It is simultaneously seductively surreal and an outrage. I use the photographic process as an investigative tool. The process of photography reveals detail and texture. I seek universals, digging beneath the surface for invisible truth, open to the optical unconscious revealed by my camera. In my quest for the poetic, my photography addresses the nature of permanence and impermanence by asking, “What remains?”
More about the Best B4 Collective
More community events
One of my favourite events. It’s about sharing. It’s about gifting. It’s like sending out a message in a bottle. This year my work is being distributed Mexico, Bristol, Hannover and Vancouver.
All of the artwork submitted to Papergirl Vancouver will be lovingly placed on display at the Roundhouse Community Centre for a week before riders head out on their bikes to spread art throughout the city.
Join the celebration of another year of art and altruism on Monday, August 24th at 6pm at the Roundhouse Community Centre!
Papergirl Vancouver 2015 Offerings
Papergirl Vancouver Exhibition Opening Announcement
Cheyenne Diner (New York)
Forest Fire (2014)
New York: What Remains 9
Spanish Banks Sea Creatures (Lumen Print, 2010)
New York: What Remains
Art Rental Show — two of my recent Lumen Prints have been added to the Cityscapes Art Rental collection and will be on show in their salon syle exhibition. Thursday, 08 January, 7 – 9 PM (Cityscapes, 355 Lonsdale, North Vancouver).
Truth and Beauty DoorCrasher Special— offers Limited Edition Prints (Desert Salt, for example), OpenStock Prints and Loose Prints at discounted prices. One week only: 10 – 17 January (Noon – 5pm), 698 West 16th Avenue. Check out the Collective collection.
Winter Salon at Photohaus Gallery — WinterSalon continues thru January. Three of my Lumen Prints are on show in this exhibition. Two of these prints are analogue lumen prints; it is an exciting opportunity because (as far as I know) I am the only artist in Greater Vancouver working in this hybrid photo-printmaking medium. Check website for hours of opening and location.
Winter Salon 2014 opens Thursday, 27th November ( 7 – 10:30 pm) at PhotoHaus Gallery (14 West 7th Avenue) with an exciting collection of work that includes three Lumen Prints that were recently exhibited at die Bedürfnisanstalt in Hamburg Germany in September.
MisSummer Spanish Bank Impressions is my current analogue Lumen Print Series. On a parched summer day, I gathered materials from what had been deposited on the beach at high tide. In my work, I am always curious to discover what emerges from the footprints and shadows of my compositions on photosensitive materials. This summer’s pareidolic gift offered images of caribou, bears and canine forms, including one that received Honourable Mention from the Cascadia exhibition jury.
My current series of Digital Lumen Prints, Illuminations and Impressions, are made from materials gathered from the Ocean Shores (Washington) foreshore. These images are made from handmade negatives using a Lumen Printing process and then digitized. These new plant forms have made new forms that trace the footprint and capture the shadows on photosensitive materials. Their luminescence invite the viewer to imagine motion and drama in what remains.
This Autumn’s exhibition at die Bedürfnisanstalt featured a selection of New York analogue Lumen prints that were exhibited in Tree — literal and figurative (On-Tak Gallery, Vancouver Chinese Cultural Centre) and premiered MidSummer Spanish Banks Impressions. A selection of digital Lumen Prints were previously showcased at the Chinese Cultural Centre Museum as well as new works made at Ocean Shores, Washington.
Caribou Portrait, Ocean Shores Impressions 1, Serious Caribou
Winter Salon 2014 continues through December. Check hours and address at PhotoHaus Gallery’s website. http://photohausgallery.com/upcoming/
TimeRaiser Vancouver (2014) selected Storm, one of my digital prints, for this year’s auction. TimeRaiser is an organization that promotes volunteer work by purchasing art from local artists and then offering it for auction at an event where emerging professions bid their time in exchange for artwork. While volunteer work is being completed, artwork is displayed in TimeRaiser’s office. This year TimeRaiser auctions are being simultaneously held in Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal, Regina, St. John’s and Winnipeg on Thursday, 08 April. Tickets for Vancouver’s TimeRaiser being held at Simon Fraser University (Segal Building).
Illuminations: forest and seashore impressions is a collection of lumen prints made from late winter seaweed and early spring windfall. Ten images invite the viewer to imagine more than what meets the eye at first glance. They are printed from handmade negatives that have been digitized to illuminate shadows and traces of cherry blossoms, bamboo, carrageenan and pine branches. Illuminations will be on show in the windows of the Chinese Cultural Centre of Vancouver for the month of January and can be seen 24/7 at 50 East Pender Street.
Two of my sketchbooks are on the Sketchbook Project Summer Tour. Soon the bookmobile will pull into Chicago and then cross the continent and set up 25+ North American locations before heading home to the Brooklyn Art Library. Sketchbook Project tours are fun. In addition to checking out and reading artist made books, there are also drawing and postcard writing activities. Find your closest city, check out some sketchbooks and let me know what you think. http://www.sketchbookproject.com/summer-tour
Both sketchooks reach deep into family history. On the Road Again — a family event photo log documents a five day roadtrip back to Bellville for a memorial service and affirmation of a new generation of elders. My drawings and photographs investigate permanence in the context of time and the river that seems to move forward and stand still. My Brooklyn Childhood — a memoir is a compilation of my father’s memoirs and memory drawings. It brings together work that my father talked about but never achieved: illustrating the many stories he told. His memory drawings open a new understanding of his Brooklyn boyhood, and the Brooklyn Art Library is a fitting location for this first edition. Selected images from both of these sketchbooks can be viewed on my Sketchbook Project Artwork page.
It’s art residency season. Working in classrooms adds another layer to my artist practice: ideas spark when I share my ideas, techniques and suggestions. Curious minds ask provocative questions. Busy hands show me how my own practice transforms in a shared creative process. Ideas go places I never would have imagined. Exhibition and celebration brings new ideas to move forward.There’s always much to show for these joyful moments in the classroom, and I long for studio time so I can go forward with new ideas and new work.
Recently, I presented a lumen prints workshop at the ArtStarts Gallery
in celebration of BC Arts and Culture Week
in conjunction with Botanimalogy—Expressions of Nature
, an exhibition of lumen prints made during my residency at Kitsilano Secondary School. This exhibition of both analogue and digital lumen prints is on show through August at the ArtStarts Gallery
at 808 Richards Street, open Tuesday through Saturday.
Lumen Prints from Kitisilano Secondary School Residency
Starting with fruit, vegetables, salt and string
Demonstrating the process
Surveying delightful results
The Sketchbook Project 2013 opens this Friday at the Brooklyn Art Library, beginning a seven city North American tour. Both artist books included in this tour reach deep into family history. My Brooklyn Childhood — a memoir is a compilation of my father’s memoirs and memory drawings. It brings together work that my father talked about but never achieved: illustrating the many stories he told. His memory drawings open a new understanding of his Brooklyn boyhood, and the Brooklyn Art Library is a fitting location for this first edition. On the Road Again — a family event photo log documents a five day roadtrip back to Bellville for a memorial service and affirmation of a new generation of elders. My drawings and photographs investigate permanence in the context of time and the river that seems to move forward and stand still. Selected images from both of these sketchbooks can be viewed on my Sketchbook Project Artwork page.
Touring Brooklyn, Austin, Atlanta, Toronto, Chicago, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles. More tour details