About

Painting

The core focus of my art practice centers on representing and interrogating concepts of time and temporality, which means I am engaged in the challenge of visually expressing a range of phenomena that encompass past, present and future, as well as our sense of how to define existence. The co-presence of these different temporal registers conveys a fullness of time I represent through paintings and photographs built in layers, like a palimpsest, using a variety of techniques. I sometimes describe my painting process as the art equivalent of the slow food movement and like a chef combining ingredients in new ways, I experiment by using unusual substrates, uncommon methods of applying the paint to the ground, and even processes such as incorporating alternative photographic printing and etching into the work to create multilayered abstract paintings. 

 For these temporal paintings I have sifted through art history to find the many ways the passage of time is expressed visually. So far, I have focused on six modes of temporal expression:

·     Stillness, or deep time, the horizon of sight and time, limits/limitlessness.

·     Light, reflection, refraction, both as a captured static element and as an active part of the metal paintings.

·     Motion, creating a sense of movement in the stillness of paint.

·     Repetition/punctuation, or counting moments on a timeline, in my work I use the EKG. 

·     Memory, the suggestion of landscape symbolized by the horizontal line. Sometimes I also incorporate photography as an anchor, an actual memory as well as its fabrication.

·     Degradation of Materials, purposely using materials that will change in time, creating art that appears static but speaks to time.     

Currently, I am painting on steel where I use the reflective surface to create constantly changing paintings. These paintings redefine what a painting is through their state of flux. They play with time, light and motion as well as stretching our notions of how paintings behave.

One of my early inspirations for this current work comes from the apocryphal story of the ancient Greek artists, Apelles and Protogenes, competing to draw the “perfect line.” I became fascinated with imagining this perfection and concluded that the perfect line is a horizontal as the horizon is always part of our visual field. However, what I find interesting about the horizontal is the breaking of it, the interruption, whether it is a blade of grass standing up, the broken horizontal bands of reflection on water, the mechanical repetition of an EKG, or perhaps merely the suggestion of the horizontal line interrupted continually. Taking these thoughts further, I researched the ways the horizontal line functions within human perception and have found that while we are vertical creatures, standing on two feet, science finds the horizontal is comforting and calming, a line that is meditative and sublime. Ironically the perfect line then is the flat-line which medically, as in an EKG, equals death. The interruption then, becomes a representation of life itself, the repeated jolt of the beating heart.

 

Photography

Photography is an integral part of my practice, an equal partner to painting, and like the painting using a variety of techniques. I gravitate to images that either edge into the abstract, and that are about line, form and light or the large vista. I am not concerned with what the photograph is "of" in a literal sense, instead I like to subvert the actual and bring forward the movement of line and light, the captured glance and glint of color as if painting.

My interest in photography started as a small child with a brownie camera and a darkroom inhabited by my brother and father. Later I trained as a film-based photographer, and therefore appreciate the feel of film and the process of the darkroom. The magic of an image coming to life before my eyes is one of the reasons I enjoy working with alternative processes like Cyanotype and Van Dyke Brown Type. Of course these old printing methods also allow me to play with our sense of time and memory. They encourage us to see and to look in new ways because of the softness of the images and the usual color palette. This also speaks to my paintings.  

 

Biography

Sarah Grew creates art based in painting and photography, expanding into installation, collage, printmaking, and environmental art as well. Her work includes a range from small pieces belonging in private collections nationally and internationally to site specific installations and public art projects. In search of new materials she has become a beekeeper, studied native plant habitats, and worked as an Artist-in-Residence for a recycling facility in California. Grew relishes discovering places that are new to her and has traveled widely through Europe, South-east Asia, and parts of Mexico to expand her cultural awareness and enrich her work. Recently, she has been awarded residencies at Playa, in eastern Oregon, and was the Artist in Residence for Joshua Tree National Park where she created a series of cyanotypes. Previously, Grew was awarded residencies at the Djerassi Resident Artist Program, the Collegeum Phaenomonologicum, Brush Creek and the Ucross Foundation and has received support fellowships from The Ford Family Foundation. She recently installed a site specific cyanotype work called Erased Landscape, Found Memory and is working on a series of paintings that examine modes of expressing temporality and cycles of time through layering visual art technologies from different periods of time.

  

  Curriculum Vitae (.pdf)

Language of Lines (detail), 2013, oils, encaustic on panel, 24" x 24"

 

SARAH GREW

ONE PERSON EXHIBITIONS

2019    Erased Landscape, Found Memory, Umpqua valley Art Association, Roseburg, OR

2019 Collections, Oregon State University Memorial Union Art Gallery, Corvallis, OR

2018    Round Table, Lauren Fisher Gallery, Eugene, OR

2017    Breath and Time, Lane Community College Art Gallery, Eugene, OR

2017    Photography as Drawing, O’Brien Photography Gallery, Eugene, OR

2016    Momenti e Spazio, Collegium Phaenomenologicum, Hotel le Mura, Cittá di Castello, Italy

2010    The Edge of Things, A Healing Space, Eugene, OR

2009    Constellations,A Healing Space, Eugene, OR

2008    Fairbanks Gallery, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

2007    Swarms,Winter’s Hill Winery, Lafayette, OR

2005    Winter Songs,Studio Project, Eugene, OR

 

PUBLIC ART COMMISSIONS

2016    Our City – Then and Now, The Arthur, Portland, OR

2015    Reaction Paintings for La Fievre, French translation of Wallace Shawn play, published by Les Editions      du Paquebot, France

2007    Coast Valley Cascade, Crescent Village Development, Arlie Company, Eugene, OR

 

GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2019    Blue Sky 2019 Pacific Northwest Viewing Drawers, Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR

            Something Blue, Gray Loft Gallery, Oakland, CA

            Eugene Grid Project Photography, InEugene Real Estate, Eugene, OR

2018    Libby Wadsworth/Sarah Grew Open Studio, Eugene, OR

            Focus 2018, b.j. spoke gallery, Huntington, NY

            Cascadia, Carnegie Crossroads Art Center, Baker City, OR

2017    Residential College Alumni Exhibition, RC Art Gallery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

            Views from Oregon: Sixteen Artists, Ucross Foundation Art Gallery, Ucross, WY

            Sarah Grew/Libby Wadsworth Open Studio, Eugene, OR

            Photozone 2, O’Brien Photography Gallery, Eugene, OR

2016    Photography Now!,Umqua Valley Art Association, Roseberg, OR

            Art Now: Photography, Ann Arbor Art Center, Ann Arbor, MI

            Same but Different, New York Center for Photographic Arts, New York, NY

            Expressions West, Coos Bay Art Museum, Coos Bay, OR 

2015    Luninous Light, Black Box Gallery, Portland, OR

            Abstract Catalyst, Verum Ultimum Gallery, Portland, OR

            Tributary, Verum Ultimum Gallery, Portland, OR

            Brush, Moss Studio, Eugene, OR

2014    Sarah Grew/Libby Wadsworth open studio, Eugene, OR

            South Willamette Art Walk, Eugene, OR

2012    Best of Photography 2012, Photographer’s Forum, Santa Barbara, CA

            Wax, Brooklyn Art Space, Brooklyn, NY

            The Love Show, Gray Loft Gallery, Oakland, CA

2011    Portals,Corvallis Art Center, Corvallis, OR 

2010    Luminous Layers, Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts, Lake Oswego, OR

            The Living River, Jacobs Gallery, the Hult Center, Eugene, OR

2008    The Art of Trading Cards, Jacobs Gallery, The Hult Center, Eugene, OR

            Translucent, Contemporary Works in Wax, Cain Schulte Gallery, San Francisco, CA

            Re-Art: Re-found, Re-used, Recycled,Lane Arts Council Gallery at the Airport, Mahlon Sweet Field  Airport, Eugene, OR

            Reliquary: the Everyday SacredClaire Flint, Sarah Grew, Ken Herrin,Jacobs Gallery, The Hult Center, Eugene, OR 

2007    Dig It, Mark Woolley Gallery, Portland, OR

            Silent Searches: Sarah Grew and Tracy Heller, Monterey Peninsula College Art Gallery, Monterey CA

            Sarah Grew and Charles Reilly, Tamarack Gallery, Eugene, OR

            Tendrils and Boughs: 5 Artists Inspired by Nature, Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, OR

            Abstract Painting, The Drawing Studio, Tucson, AZ

2006    NewPhotography, Tamarack Gallery, Eugene, OR

            Maude Kerns Art Center Annual, Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, OR

            Mayor’s Art Show, Jacobs Gallery, the Hult Center, Eugene, OR

            Parts and Pieces: Collage, ArtCentric, Corvallis, OR

            Assembling Through Space, Firehouse Gallery, Rogue Community College, Grants Pass, OR

            Reassessing Everyday Objects, Wiseman Gallery, Rogue Community College, Grants Pass, OR

2005    Maude Kerns Art Center Annual, Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, OR

            Mayor’s Art Show, Jacobs Gallery, the Hult Center, Eugene, OR

            Small Works,Firehouse Studio, Eugene, OR

2004    Open Studio at Taking the Leap,East Bay Open Studios, ProArts, Oakland, CA

“Untitled”,Hollis Street Project, Emeryville, CA

 

LECTURES

2017    Artist Talk, Lane Community College Department of Art, Eugene OR

2017    Artist Talk for course on Visual Culture, Department of Contempoary Literature, University of Oregon

2016    Five Temporal Modalities, Collegium Phaenomenologicum, Cittá di Castello, Italy

2016    Artist Talk for Philosophy of the Arts, Department of Philosophy, University of Oregon

2008    Artist Insight Talk, January 10, 2008, Jacobs Gallery, Eugene, OR

2007    Monterey Peninsula College, November 15, 2007, Monterey CA

2007    University of Oregon, April 17, 2007, Eugene, OR

2007    Maude Kerns Art Center, January 31, 2007, Eugene, OR

 

WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES

2018    Introduction to Alternative Photographic Printing Processes, Lane Community College, Eugene, OR

2010    Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Encaustic Painting Class, Eugene, OR

2010    Maude Kerns Art Center, Encaustic Painting Class, Eugene, OR

2010    Springfeild School District, Encaustic Painting for Teens, Eugene OR

2009    Maude Kerns Art Center, Encaustic Painting Class, Eugene OR

 

BIBLIOGAPHY AND PUBLICATIONS

Eugene Scene, On Photography: Paul Carter Interviews Photographer-Painter Sarah Grew, https://www.eugenescene.org/on-photography-paul-carter-interviews-photographer-painter-sarah-grew/2018

Carnegie Art Center, Cascadia, exhibition Catalog 2018

Ford Family Ford Foundation, Views form Oregon: Sixteen Artists at the Ucross Foundation, exhibition catalog, 2017 

New York Center for Photographic Arts, Same but Different, exhibition catalog, 2016

Black Box Gallery, Luminous Light, exhibition catalog, 2015

Wallace Shawn, La Fievre, Les Editions du Paquebot, 2015

Photographer’s Forum, Best of Photography 2012, Serbin Communications, 2012

Amalia Gladhart, Detours, Burnside Press, 2012 (bookcover)

Karen MacPherson, Sketching Elise. Finishing Line Press, 2012 (bookcover)

Michael J. Stern. Nietzsche’s Ocean Stringberg’s Open Sea. Berliner Berträge für Skandinavistik, Band 11, 2008 (bookcover)

“Jacob’s Gallery Review”, Robert Canaga, Eugene Gallery District, http://www.eugenegallerydistrict.blogspot.com,January 18, 2008

 

RESIDENCIES and AWARDS

2018    Playa Artist Residency Program, Summer Lake, OR

2018    The Ford Family Foundation Fellowship for Oregon Artists

2017    Joshua Tree National Park Artist in Residence Program, Twentynine Palms, CA

2016    Djerassi Resident Artist Program, Woodside, CA

2016    The Ford Family Foundation Fellowship for Oregon Artists

2016    Collegium Phaenomenologicum, Artist in Residence, Cittá di Castello, Italy

2016    Brush Creek Foundation, Artist in Residence, Saratoga, WY 

2016    New York Center for Photographic Arts, Same but Different

2013    Ucross Foundation Artist in Residence, Sheridan WY

2013    Ford Family Foundation Fellowship for Oregon Artists

2011    Playa Artist Residency Program, Summer Lake, OR

2009    STUDIO Resident Artist Program, Eugene, OR

 

EDUCATION

1982    B.A. cum Laude, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

1980School of Visual Arts of New York, Summer Program in Tangiers, Morocco