Opening Reception at The Mill, February 17th

Please join me for the the opening reception of my exhibition Sinking (also Rising) at The Mill in San Francisco on Friday, February 17th, from 6-8pm.

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Sinking (also Rising)
Abigail McNamara
February 17 - March 30, 2017
The Mill
736 Divisadero Street
San Francisco

Faultlines (reason 2) on view at Stumptown

My newest series of work Faultlines (reason 2) is now on view at Stumptown Downtown through June 9th. Please take a moment to stop by if you are in Portland during the coming month! If you aren't able to see the pieces in person, there are photos posted on my website.

Stumptown is located at 128 SW 3rd Ave and is open 6-7 M-F and 7-7 S-S.

  Faultlines (reason 2, number 6) detail Photo by Jessica Breedlove

 

Faultlines (reason 2, number 6) detail

Photo by Jessica Breedlove


Upcoming reception on Thursday, Oregon Arts Watch write-up

Oregon Arts Watch's Megan Harned featured my show at Duplex in her guide to Portland's monthly First Thursday gallery event.

"Her use of gold, as a natural material with deep cultural significance, is an appropriate medium to explore how nature mediates culture and vice versa.  These themes of growth and decay combined with a meticulous craft techniques create the foundation for her time-based art."

The reception will be held this Thursday, November 6th between 6 & 9 pm. Duplex Collective is at 219 NW Couch.

Interview with Duplex Collective

In conjunction with the launch of my current time-based installation project at Duplex Collective, Jessica Breedlove Latham and Lindsay Jordan Kretchun visited my studio and interviewed me about my work. Duplex has posted an interview along with some photographs of their visit here.

photo by Jessica Breedlove Latham

photo by Jessica Breedlove Latham

On Tuesday, I began gold leafing the walls of the gallery space. As I work, the gallery will continue to be open to the public so that you may witness the slow expansion of the artwork over time. Duplex will update their Facebook page weekly with my in-residence schedule. The piece will be completed before my reception on First Thursday, November 6th and will remain on view through November 21st. 

Abigail McNamara at Duplex Collective

Abigail McNamara 
October & November

Join us at the 1st Thursday opening November 6th, 2014.

Abigail McNamara is joining us in the gallery for a two month time based installation. Armed with a Career Opportunity Grant from the Oregon Arts Commission, gold leaf, and critical thinking about changes in data and organic shifts, McNamara will transform the space over time, completing the piece for her opening on November 6th. As she Installs throughout the month of October, we encourage visitors to stop by the gallery while the artist is working to fully experience the growth of the work. Be sure to check our Facebook page for an up-to-date schedule. Mark your calendar to join us for her First Thursday opening on November 6th.

Abigail McNamara: Quietly, Paying Attention

I want to share with you an article written by Emily Cobb. Her newsletter, Studio Club, features her written accounts of artists and their work. Emily visited me at my studio in June and has published her writeup about my work here: Abigail McNamara: Quietly, Paying Attention.

Here is a brief excerpt:

"This tension, between the austere and grotesque-organic qualities in her work, is what makes Abigail’s work stand out.  It’s neither trying to shock or soothe.  It’s not surprising that she views her process as a kind of meditation the way that it brings into focus serenity without dismissing the more uncomfortable organic arraignments."

Thank you to Emily for reaching out, and for her beautiful words and insights.

 

Ritual, 660' at The Portland Building Installation Space

My latest work, Ritual, 660', is now on view at the Portland Building Installation Space. The piece is made of 660 cotton strings coated in beeswax and pigment. The strings are hung from an aluminum frame. The Installation Space is a program of the Regional Arts and Culture Council.

Ritual, 660' is on view through September 5th. The Portland Building is open Monday through Friday, 7 am - 6 pm. 

Thank you to Keith Lachowicz of RACC and my amazing helpers Mad Roche, Sunny Faris, Nash Jones, Hannon Welch, and Jess Mons.  

More photos to come.

Artist Statement

The patterns of the working world are carefully constructed. We follow the familiar pathways of prescribed norms – nine to five, Monday through Friday, one hour for lunch. The masses move together along this framework. I am examining this strict human-made structure to reveal the organic forms which underlie it.

Each string represents one minute of a day at the Portland Building. From 7:00 am to 6:00 pm on June 19, 2014, I observed the ritual comings and goings through the building’s entrance. The 660 strings are waxed to indicate the size of the flow both in and out of the doors – those entering indicated above the knot, and those exiting indicated below.

Activity ebbs and flows within the established workday. Bodies move in swarms or in solitude along currents. The shapes of these movements oppose the rigid structure of the work week. Paths build upon one another as each person moves in, out, and through the building. Individuals gradually flow from here to there and the populace of the building swells and shrinks like changing tides. In this piece, the colored form within the strings exposes the shape that this ritualistic migration takes.

The creation of this piece became a ritual all it’s own. The careful measuring, knotting, waxing and drying of each string is a ceremonious process. Each individual minute on June 29th grew into many more minutes as I labored over the strings and this piece took shape. As I move through this artistic ceremony I am reminded of my thirst for ritual, and I come closer to understanding why we are drawn to it. Ritual brings us together, comforts us, and suggests to us that we are doing things right.

Read more at the Regional Arts and Culture Council's website.

Place (first draft) at The Brink in Missoula

My latest work, Place (first draft), is now on view at The Brink Gallery in my hometown, Missoula, Montana. This piece was my first foray into textile work and I look forward to continuing my exploration of this medium. Place (first draft) is made of 80 yards of hand-stitched muslin.

Thank you to my mom and sister, Jodie & Hannah McNamara for their assistance and expertise in helping me to execute this work. Thank you to Jennifer and The Brink for inviting me to work in your beautiful space. Thank you as well to those of you who were able to make it to the opening reception.

Photos of the finished piece are now posted on my website.

Place (first draft) (detail)

Artist Statement

This piece is about a place. A place composed of forms, slowly sculpted by time or something bigger than time. All along these forms were sculpting me. Land rising and then sloping, sheltering and then exposing – this place is my home.

Like the forming of the land, I add layers. One at a time. I stitch the many parts until together they make a whole. The fabric is muslin, a garment maker’s drafting fabric. I allow myself to play and to practice, to get to know this textile. The form is born from both the will of the fabric and the work of my hands. There is no agenda. This is a conversation and it meanders across the form. A pattern emerges, swelling and rippling upon itself.

To fabricate something is to tell a story. It is also to make or to assemble something. I am doing both. This piece tells the story of it’s assemblage, the story of my hands at work. Implicit in each stitch is also the story of fabric – a human story, and furthermore a woman’s story. It also tells my story – the story of the land that raised me, the story of these forms that I continue to trace and retrace.

 

Work in progress

Work is underway for my upcoming installation at the Brink Gallery in my hometown Missoula, Montana. I am really enjoying working with fabric – a new material for me. With this piece I am exploring my interest in craft and process, as well as my relationship to my home. The exhibition opens Friday April 4th. More to come! 

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Here Now Pop-Up Shop in NYC to feature my latest work

Here Now, a pop-up shop & gallery space, will be featuring my newest work during the opening days of their month-long event. My series of gold leaf drawings, All that glitters 1-12, will be exhibited on their gallery wall October 4th - 6th, and available for sale in the retail shop for the remainder of the event through October 29th.

The Here Now space is at 35 East 1st Street, Manhattan, NY. Their website herenowpopup.com features information about scheduled events (workshops, performances, etc.) as well as work by the other amazing artists and artisans who will be part of Here Now.

Thank you to Kendyll, Galen, Alexa and Nathan for all of your hard work!