The Alice Gallery is located at the historic Glendinning Mansion in Salt Lake City, Utah, which also houses the main offices of Utah Arts & Museums. The gallery is named after Alice Merrill Horne, a legislator who supported the arts and founded the Utah Arts Council in 1899.
The gallery hosts exhibitions by Utah artists and works from the State Fine Art Collection. The Rio & Alice Galleries were established as a free service to Utah artists and surrounding communities. These venues allow emerging artists, professional artists, and curators to collaborate in the process of exhibition-making as well as engage the community through thoughtful and innovative art-making and dialogue.
Tuesday – Friday 10 am – 4 pm | Closed Saturday & Sunday
617 East South Temple SLC, UT 84102
Free and open to the public
Gallery Phone: 801-236-7555
May 11th-July 6th, 2018
Gallery Stroll Artist’s Reception: June 15, 2018 | 6 – 9 pm
The language of fabric has been the foundation and springboard of Laura Sharp Wilson’s work for the past two decades. Her earliest paintings were of threads formed into chaotic knots, later work utilized flat botanical imagery giving plants human powers.
Wilson says, “I love fabric for so many reasons. It is woven together like a society, that it can represent the female realm, that it can be sewn, pulled apart, ripped, it can rot, it can have a pattern, and a pattern can be dissected. Fabric can transform a person with clothing and costume, or an interior, with rugs, curtains and upholstery. “
In her current work, Wilson is looking back at the people who expanded this country’s population. People like her great grandparents who unraveled their lives, came to America settled and re-wove their existence. Her Irish, Scottish and Swedish great grandparents fought hard to elevate themselves in this country but in the process ignored those already here. Wilson struggles with the fact that these people, a carpenter, a small town doctor, a house painter, a textile importer, plopped down in a country with a, “racist, oppressive social system, and carried on, changing little, for the poor, non-white and indigenous of this land.”
Can bound empty spaces represent a deep insecurity? Can transparency and opacity suggest ignoring others? Can a structured or chaotic weaving portray a society? Wilson thinks so. In her images, the fabric of people’s lives is dissected and broken down into threads, strands, rope, shapes, patterns and chains, which are allowed to bind, constrict, envelope, unravel, create webs, outline, cover up, and reconcile. A new narrative appears illustrating internal feelings of turmoil and confusion which beg to be sorted out and clarified. She says, “In making this work I feel part of the discourse this country is currently having about where we come from, who we are and what we want to be.”
Laura Sharp Wilson was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1965 and grew up in New York and New Jersey. She received a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an MFA from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Wilson also studied surface textile design at North Carolina State University and served as an apprentice at the Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia. The artist has exhibited sculpture, installation, painting and drawing nationally and internationally since 1996. Wilson’s design “Thread, Strand, Rope and Yarn” a 5,000 square foot terrazzo floor is part of the public art of the Eccles Theater in downtown Salt Lake City. A collection of her drawings were on exhibit at McKenzie Fine Art in New York. Currently Wilson is working on “Small” an exhibition that considers her great-grandparents Euro-American generation. Laura Sharp Wilson lives in Salt Lake City with her husband and son. More at LauraSharpWilson.com
Selected works from the Utah State Fine Art Collection July 13 – September 7
Jan Andrews and Trent Alvey September 14 – November 2
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