Belatedly, The Hunt, Part I

The Hunt is coming down today. It's a testament to my procrastination that I have yet to really talk about it, which is in part due to the fact that I have a lot to say and I'm not sure where to begin. In truth, though the show has run its course at OCAC's Hoffman Gallery, I believe the project itself has a long-term trajectory that will take it many places.

Briefly, the project was based on a scavenger hunt, facilitated by Beth Robinson of Robin Press. This is how Beth began describing her idea for The Hunt:
“Scavenger Hunt”
Do you remember as a child going on a scavenger hunt? The challenge of looking for things with a map, compass or trusted instinct, combined with pure exhilaration? Then the enjoyment of the found object while sharing the adventures tale. I would like to propose a scavenger hunt with a group of artist in the Oregon Health and Science University’s Historical Collections & Archives.
Continue reading The Hunt story here.
And a really nice article written by the Oregon Health Sciences University archives staff about the opening can be found here.

These are a few snapshots of my piece in the show. They are monoprints created using layers of stencils on a primed wooden board. The object I received to respond to was an artificial heart valve.

The prints in this series represent the processing of many complicated sets of dual ideas. Valves, by their nature, are mindless gatekeepers. They are almost binary in their function. Yes, No. Open, Closed. The Mitral Valve is itself a bi-leaf structure, and the artificial Mitral Valve first developed and implanted in 1960 by Portland’s Dr. Albert Starr and engineer Lowell Edwards are defined by dualities. The artificial valve is at once representative of improbability and overwhelmingly successful innovation. In the process of making these prints I wanted to explore representing duality using positive and negative space, abstraction and representation. A heart that is not really a heart, the areas where black and white make grey; because in fact, a valve’s function is not simply binary but may comprise many degrees of open and closed.