GILMAN CONTEMPORARY’S EXHIBITION PULP REALITY WILL FEATURE WORKS on paper by local artist Jill Lear, in addition to works by Peter Clark and Jeri Eisenberg.
Jill Lear is a painter whose primary subject and inspiration is historic trees, but that would be too simple. To Lear, recording the trees is a means of interpreting not only the experience of being in and thinking about nature but also the way in which we process the world around us. Using a variety of mediums, including charcoal, pencil, watercolor, Washi paper, and Washi tape, Lear “maps” the tree, applying a level of investigation beyond what the eye typically absorbs at first glance. This “mapping” is a systematic approach to separating the picture into parts, conceptually and visually. “It is rather like treating the tree and surrounding area as if it were an entire mountain range rather than a single object in space,” Lear notes.
Taking in her work, the viewer notices the inherent restraint rather than an exact replication of the tree. There is as much honor for the space between the branches and roots as there is for the tree itself. It is this space, where time and events have unfolded around these ancient beings, where Lear speaks the loudest. It is this space that offers deeper contemplation and perhaps the key to processing the world around us.
Pulp Reality will also feature Peter Clark’s hand collages and prints. For over 20 years, Clark has been creating collage works in his hometown just outside London, England. Clark has stored up thousands of papers in his studio for his creations by scouring antique stores, “car boot sales,” paper shows, and flea markets in places across the globe. Using maps, old labels, pamphlets, magazines, discarded tickets, or cigarette packages, Clark relies on colors, patterns, and textures to create a menagerie of images. From beloved dogs and parrots to colorful fish and flowers, he has a unique ability to turn the ordinary into the extraordinary while maintaining a sense of wit and whimsy.
Amongst Clark’s favorite materials are old maps, which he uses “for color, information, or joke reasons. I use the linear qualities within them sometimes to ‘draw’ with,” he explains. “They are so versatile. They can be very specific or used in an abstract way. I love them, and they enable one to instantly play and change scale!”
Gilman Contemporary will also exhibit four prints by Jeri Eisenberg from her ongoing series, “A Sojourn in Seasons.” For Eisenberg, this series serves as an affirmation of beauty in the everyday natural world, tinged with the bittersweet—a reminder of our temporal being.
“I began this series as my father was losing both his sight and his memory. With his slowly increasing dementia and the blurring of his vision, much was lost; but an essence always remained accessible,” says Eisenberg.
Using a defocused lens or oversized pinhole while shooting the treed landscape around her, she captured a world she assumed he saw.
“I repress photography’s typical emphasis on specifics and detail but retain an essence that stresses the medium’s expressive nature,” she shares.
Eisenberg’s images are segmented, printed on three-foot-long panels of Japanese Kozo paper, and infused with molten encaustic medium (a mixture of beeswax and tree resin). There is an internal luminance resulting from the use of the wax and the texture of the Kozo paper.
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