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  • Paintings and Collages, 2007–2012
  • Sarah Slavick (bio)

Throughout my work, maze-like sets of organic forms resemble snaking worms or seed pods; they connect and break apart. Because the resulting framework of lifelike forms is firmly wedded to the grid, I create a tension between technological and biological order. I also implement an ambiguous scale so these systems equally resemble an aerial view of a city at night or a microscopic view of organic matter. These pieces simultaneously suggest consumption and regeneration like a virus or the building of a city, and thus reference both destruction and renewal on very great and very small scales.

My recent paintings reference the interiors of the body: cells, neurons, blood, milk, veins, wounds, and sutures. While my paintings are informed by such tragedies as AIDS and joyous events like birth, I do not desire or aim for any specific reading. Instead, the works determine an arena of interpretation informed by matters of regeneration, connection, disease, and recovery. I make paintings containing hundreds of pieces of wood of various heights, widths, and lengths. Each piece represents a separate entity but is linked with its surrounding neighbors by various systematic rules and decisions. The small singular elements are meant to exist in equal strength to the whole. In effect, nothing is disconnected from the whole. The individual cannot exist without support; nevertheless, it remains distinctly unique. The singular elements ultimately change in form and substance by becoming something greater than themselves. A transmutation occurs from part to the whole.

The works on paper are cut into squares and pieced together so that the original order of forms is broken and reconfigured. The random drips and marks come together with the paper pieces to form a loosely systematic arrangement of both disconnections and connections. Once more, a transmutation occurs.

www.sarahslavick.com [End Page 114]


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Sarah Slavick
BITS AND PIECES 15, 2011
Mixed media collage on paper, 8.5 × 11 in.
Photo: Sarah Slavick

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Sarah Slavick
BITS AND PIECES 6, 2011
Mixed media collage on paper, 8.5 × 11 in.
Photo: Sarah Slavick

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Sarah Slavick
RETICULATION 8 (detail), 2012
Mixed media on paper, 20 × 20 in.
Photo: Sarah Slavick

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Sarah Slavick

Sarah Slavick (b. Munich, Germany, 1958) received her BA in Studio Art from Wesleyan University and an MFA from Pratt Institute. Her work has been recently exhibited at the Massachusetts Convention Center (Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Showcase Exhibition), the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum (Lincoln, Massachusetts), the Miller Block Gallery (Boston), and the Giola Gallery (Chicago). Slavick has lectured about her work at Bowdoin College, the University of the Arts (Philadelphia), the San Francisco Art Institute, the Studio Arts Center International (Florence, Italy), and the Maryland Institute of Art, among others. A member of a large family, she has five siblings, three of whom are also professional artists. “Flesh and Blood,” an exhibition of her and her three artist-sisters’ work that explores notions of family-genealogy and the body, premiered at Carnegie Mellon University and traveled to Virginia, Florida, and Hong Kong. She currently teaches at the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University.

Rajchman, John. “The Contemporary: A New Idea?” In Aesthetics and Contemporary Art, edited by Armen Avanessian and Luke Skrebowski, 125–44. Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2011.
Sakai, Naoki. “Kindai to sekai no kōsō.”In Kindai sekai no keisei, by Sakai et al., 1–42. Tokyo: Iwanami, 2002.
———. “Theory and Asian Humanity: On the Question of Humanitas and Anthropos.Postcolonial Studies 13, no. 4 (2010): 441–64.
———. Voices of the Past: The Status of Language in Eighteenth-Century Japanese Discourse. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1991.
Smith, Terry. “Introduction: The Contemporaneity Question.” In Antinomies of Art and Culture: Modernity, Postmodernity, Contemporaneity, edited by Terry Smith, Okwui Enwezor, and Nancy Condee, 1–18. Durham: Duke University Press, 2008.
Valéry, Paul. “La crise de l’esprit.” In Œuvres, vol. 1, edited by Jean Hytier, 988–1014. Paris: Gallimard, 1957. [End Page 48]

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-6539
Print ISSN
0300-7162
Pages
pp. 114-122
Launched on MUSE
2013-09-12
Open Access
No
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