BLACKgreyWHITE is show about communication I curated at Gage Academy in Seattle in which I challenged eight artists, including myself, to make works using only black or grey or white.
The black and white works represented polarized viewpoints, with works in grey representing compromise, mutuality and commonality. Restricted in the use of contrast, the artists had to devise alternate ways of creating visually engaging works.
With work by by Sharon Arnold, Anne Blackburn, Cable Griffith, Troy Gua, Robert Hardgrave, Counsel Langley and Amy-Ellen Flatchestedmama Trefsger, and Julia Hensley.
BLACKgreyWHITE is about communication. I wanted to create a show that reflects on the potential for connection between polarized viewpoints, represented by works created entirely in black or white, with works in grey representing compromise, mutuality and commonality.
Grey is the bridge and the moderator, a means to go forward.
While conceptually BLACKgreyWHITE is about the possibility of finding a third path in a landscape of polarized points of view, visually it’s about the effects resulting from working within strict limitations and asking, “What can I do within these restrictions?”
I challenged eight artists to create work using only black, or grey, or white in any given piece. Unable to rely on the familiar devices of value or color contrast, the artists had to come up with other ways to make their pieces legible and engaging. As you can see they got pretty creative in their solutions.
Communicating with one another when we hold opposite views involves a willingness to listen, a desire to look past the easy or obvious, and ultimately, the intrinsically human need to connect with others by conveying a thought. The same can be said about the exercise of working within rigorous constraints. I hope you enjoy the results of our explorations.
July 31, 2013