Saturday, February 6, 2010

Brenda Mallory

I love the way Brenda Mallory relates her very abstract forms to the natural world. They a beautiful and strange at the same time. The piece below is part of an installation titled Offcuts.

About this work she explains:
"A nearly bottomless supply of cloth pieces in the shape of an elongated oval known in geometry and religion as the vesica pisces are stacked in my studio. For Offcuts, I set myself two parameters: one was to use only these pieces as a base; the second was to adhere to a basic law of physics which states “matter cannot be created or destroyed, but can only change its form”. If I cut apart a piece of fabric I had to form something else with what remained. Nothing went into the trashcan. What I did to the shapes was not restricted in any other way. They were variously burned, waxed, sewn, bolted, rolled, stretched, crushed and combined with other materials."

The work above is a snippet of her Porous Borders, an installation piece in collaboration at the Portland Building with Toronto artist Fei Disbrow. Regarding this work she says, "Porous Borders deals with the fears and paranoia that dominate post 911 culture. The work creates is a feeling of discomfort and a lack of ease, even evoking repulsion by using forms that almost seem natural, but are actually deeply strange and offputting."

Below is a detail of work from another installation piece titled Biophilia.

Brenda is one of the featured artists in the Luminous Layers, Exploring Contemporary Encaustic curated exhibition at Lake Oswego, Oregon opening in late June.


  1. Very interesting work, Gwen. Thanks for posting.

  2. Hi, Gwen, I've been enjoying your blog for a long time, and admiring your work. Just saw your notice for your upcoming exhibit at the Conrad Wilde Gallery. I'm an artist living in Oracle, just north of Tucson, and have put the artist talk and opening on my calendar. It will be exciting to have a chance to see your work in person. Will you be able to make it to the opening?

  3. Barbara, Thanks for you good words. Yes, I will be at the reception. I hope to see you there.


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