Erika describes her work as an homage to wood's utilitarian role in our lives:
We use wood for nearly everything - to build our homes and our furniture, to keep us warm in winter and on cold nights around the campfire. We use it to make paper, grapestakes, fences, matchsticks, grocery bags, cardboard...and the list goes on. Yet, wood can also give us insight into a past that stretches far beyond our own histories. Each piece of wood tells a story, recording time and events in the form of scars, weathering and growth.The marks and rings of the nearly 3000 year old, giant sequoia depicted in Hunting Stump/Grape Stake and 2749 Years for Matchsticks chronicle drought, fire, earthquakes, pestilence, and conclusively, human penetration in the form of a logging operation aimed at the manufacturing of grape stakes and matchsticks. Ultimately, this work is an attempt to recognize the vital, utilitarian role wood plays in our existence, while at the same time, paying homage to the lives and stories of these trees."
Dispersal/Return: Land Arts of the American West 2000- 2006
August 28 - November 25, 2009
The University of New Mexico Art Museum presents twenty artists from Land Arts of the American West, an interdisciplinary field program in the Department of Art and Art History at UNM. Curated by Bill Gilbert, the Lannan Chair and Director of the Land Arts program and Michele M. Penhall, Curator, Prints and Photographs at the UNM Art Museum, the exhibition brings together former participants from this innovative studio program who continue to work on land art based projects. The exhibition includes video and installation works by Claire Long and Anna Keleher, Blake Gibson, Yoshimi Hayashi, Mark Hensel and Jen Van Horn; works on paper and sculpture by Jeff Beekman, Erika Osborne, Blake Gibson, Geordie Shepherd, Jeanette Hart-Mann, Brooke Steiger, Gabe Romero, and Peter Voshefski. There will also be four site specific works commissioned for the exhibition by Julie Anand, Jeanette Hart- Mann/Nina Dubois, Jess Dunn, and Ryan Henel. A performance by Gabe Romero and John Loth is scheduled for the opening night reception.
For more information about the Land Arts of the American West program at the University of New Mexico visit http://www.unm. edu/~artdept2/land_arts/index.html