Featuring Francesca Pastine in the Front Gallery
Exhibition runs: May 28 – June 14, 2008
Opening Reception: Friday, May 30, 6-9 PM
Gallery Hours: Wednesdays - Saturdays, 1-6 PM
The work in Alterations manipulates and recontextualizes the actual pages of the New York Times and ArtForum magazine. Pastine’s Artforum Excavations series is an archaeological investigation. Through a process of cutting, slashing and digging, Pastine alters the form of the glossy, oddly proportioned magazine. In this aggressive act of "gutting", she creates a visceral topography of decades of art trends. Re-forming the magazine is also a sly way of manipulating the art scene rather than being manipulated by it. The Invisible Women Series came about from Pastine’s continuing investigation into the invisibility of women's’ work. She blocks out photographs and text through a process of burnishing the newspaper page with a 9B graphite pencil. The result resembles graphite-leaf with the untouched image embossed on the surface. The women are rendered invisible, and the work of covering them mimics the repetitive and often unseen efforts of household tasks. This process is also employed for the Iraqi Casualty series. Pastine edits the content and imagery of the news story by selectively blocking out large areas of the newspaper. The time-intensive task of burnishing the page with graphite serves as a penance for her impotence in the face of the insurmountable tragedy of the Iraqi war.
Content is reconfigured as a result of Pastine’s physical interventions with these print mediums. The sensory process of taking in information is made visceral. In this manner, she draws attention to the physicality of objects that are mentally consumed, and then discarded. Through these alterations, Pastine not only subtly shifts cultural output, she also prompts viewers to engage in an embodied experience of disembodied information.