Sarah Grace Pendergrass: Art Honors Exhibition and Talk
Carlos Gallery, Nabit Building
Fri, April 05, 2013 - 4:30 pm
"The word “incarnate” can suggest both the possession of bodily (particularly human) form and, alternatively, a more metaphorical type of embodiment through which something abstract becomes concrete, actual, and comprehensible. The implication that bodily form somehow provides comprehensive understanding of that which supposedly inhabits it neglects the complexity of human experience as lived through body.The body is a vessel—a three-dimensional object through which humans encounter the world (or perhaps it entirely constitutes human experience). Alternatively, it is something that people look at all the time as an image on a two-dimensional surface, separate and opposite them, in the reflection of the mirror or in photographs. These two models, of variously flat and spatial dimension, offer completely different understandings of body, and yet both inform a person’s experience of the world.
On a broader level, I am interested in how multiple and conflicting models of one concept become valid and vital components of the way we understand that concept. Light provides a pertinent example: depending on the problem at hand, scientists might treat light as a particle or a wave. It variously exhibits the behaviors of both. Both models are required to understand how light operates in and interacts with the physical world. My current work examines, via the painted surface, how this greater philosophical interest in multi-state or multi-modeled existence intersects with human experience of the body. Tension between illusion and materiality, between two-dimensional and three-dimensional elements, between the appearance or actuality of flatness and space—these all become vital components of my rendering the human body in multiple states." - Sarah Grace Pendergrass