In the Distance from Here to My Heart
Mixed-Media Artwork by Erin D. Coleman
Reception: Sat, Jan 14, 4pm
In the distance from here to my heart, a landscape takes form through printed maps of inner journeys. Here is an ambiguous starting place where the longings to nurture and love and to be nurtured and loved are printed, painted, drawn, and stitched into the very works themselves.
My work serves as a way of viewing and reflecting parts of the self via a process of tracking images across surfaces, mapping, tracing rivers, and creating pathways that I see a correlation between the skin of the earth and the skin of the body. Visceral experience is not separate from spiritual and intellectual existence. Imprinting, stitching, dying, and painting on muslin fabric is essential to creating the tie between body, skin, fabric, and clothing. Once removed from the body, clothing and fabric contain the dual presence and absence of bodily experience. It is this essence of the landscape in which these works mirror the interior emotional space from here to my heart, a metaphoric terrain that is traced via methodic stitching and delicate pathways.
As an artist, I find that there is the opportunity to create—via a “magical process”—using an item of little value and transforming it into something of great meaning, which is central to my work. I transform my own life experiences into meaningful expressions by selecting simple materials and images such as maps, garments, household materials, and thread, and transforming them via an alchemical-esque process. My use of embroidery and other traditional “women’s work” techniques, along with lived-used surfaces that appear to have passed from one use to the next over time, serves to remind us that a life lived is charged with meaning.
Erin D. Coleman received her MFA in Studio Art from Northern Illinois University and her BA in Art Education from Goshen College in Indiana. She moved to Salt Lake City, Utah in 2011, where she is now a practicing educator, artist, and designer. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Communication at Westminster College, teaching undergraduate graphic design. When she is not in the classroom, she can be found in her studio surrounded by her favorite plants, streaming good music and drinking coffee.
Both Coleman’s art-making and design practice range between personal narratives and public collaborative works that address issues such as creative re-use, sustainable design, domestic space, wearable arts, and social issues pertaining to women and gender. Her skills and interests include teaching, museum and exhibition curation, sewing and needlework, collecting vintage sewing patterns and notions, and collaborative projects. She exhibits and presents locally and nationally. Recent presentations and workshops include "Re-visiting Envision: An Exhibition of Art Addressing Sexual Violence” at SUNY, Buffalo in New York. Recent exhibitions include Flesh\RE/Flect in Salt Lake City, Utah, Going this Way and Measure of Salt at the Granary Art Center in Ephraim, Utah, and (Un)finished Show, exhibited at the Bountiful Davis Art Center in Bountiful, Utah. Her current portfolio can be found at erincolemancruz.com.
Location: Main Library, Gallery at Library Square
Contact Information: 801-524-8200