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RedLine’s ‘Timeline’ Focuses on Art by Artists-In-Residence

Aug. 23, 2016
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RedLine Milwaukee is a place with artist studios, gallery space, classes and an Artists-In-Residence (AIR) program. The annual exhibition, “Timeline,” offers a moment to peruse the results of the past year from nine AIR artists.

One of the first pieces in the exhibition is Julie VonDerVellen’s Credit or Debit? It serves as a sound introduction to her methods of making woven paper tapestries. This large piece is pale white with vertical strands left hanging loosely at the bottom. It is minimalist, austere and unexpectedly rich in detail. Look closely to see that the papers are cash register receipts. You’ll soon pick out bits and fragments from well-known chain stores, and in one detail the printed words “THANK YOU” are legible. It is a reminder of the transactional nature of daily life—and the thousands of bits of paper recording each drop in the stream of commerce.

Other artists in the exhibition drift from the tangible realities of life into places more esoteric and mysterious. This is especially true of Sue Lawton. In her artist’s statement, she explains that she is working on a science fiction novel about time-traveling refugees that “draws upon themes of fractured time, collective amnesia and cultural abandonment,” all of which are distinctly pertinent to current events. The story itself is not part of the exhibition, but instead prints, objects and documents related to it. Most dramatic is Venna Raesh’s Ceremonial Helm, a sculptural headdress that looks to have come from medieval Atlantis, if there ever was such a thing.

Jamie Bilgo Bruchman also works with mixed media, but the quality of design and technique are what yield surprises in her work. Delicate patterns seem to float on the surface of her prints, but there are multiple layers and depth. Fine lines appear in places, subtly repeated. She uses a number of things to achieve this effect, such as produce netting and lace, and her handling is most elegant.

As a group show, there is no single theme, medium or style that dominates “Timeline,” but inventive and unusual approaches are often found.

“Timeline” continues through Saturday, October 1 at RedLine Milwaukee, 1422 N. Fourth St. For more information, call 414-491-9088 or visit redlineartmke.org.  

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