New exhibitions at Granary Arts | News, Sports, Jobs

Jane Roberts DeGroff, Gifts of the Land of Sanpete, Detail, 2022

Granary Arts is pleased to present new exhibitions:

Material witness / Jorge Rojas

Material Witness is a mid-career retrospective of the abstract work of Jorge Rojas drawing on more than fifteen years of experimentation with materials and media. This exhibition presents an overview of 2D and 3D works from 2003 to the present, highlighting two periods of time he has lived in New York – from 1993 to 1997 and again from 2002 to 2009. It is important to note that these periods reflect the artist’s engagement with minimalism, post-minimalism, color field painting, process art, and concrete art, while infusing these influences with his Mexican roots and understanding of art. art, materials and Mesoamerican cosmovision.

Rojas first left his native Mexico with his family at the age of six, and his frequent wanderings since have shaped his universal visual language as well as his experimental approach to materials and art. The Zen emphasis on purity of form plays an important role in his work and results in patterns and grids that involve color, geometry and through repetition generate rhythms, harmonies and vibrations.

Working fluidly between painting and sculpture, Rojas uses tactile and sensory elements – including wax, layers of paint, sound and found materials – to deconstruct materiality and discover new meanings. Everyday objects and materials like sandpaper, record covers and sink strainers are transformed into sculptural objects as he uses assemblage techniques to create new forms. Rojas says, “I start a piece with a feeling rather than an idea. It is in the act of doing that meaning is revealed.

About the artist

Jorge Rojas (born 1968 in Cuautla, Morelos, Mexico; lives and works in Salt Lake City, UT) is a multidisciplinary artist, independent curator and arts educator. Rojas studied art at the University of Utah and at Bellas Artes in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Her work and curatorial projects have been exhibited nationally and internationally in galleries and museums including White Box, Museo del Barrio and Queens Museum of Art in New York; New World Museum and Project Row Houses in Houston; Diaspora Vibe Gallery in Miami; MACLA in San Jose; Art Museum of Utah, Museum of Contemporary Art of Utah and Woodbury Museum of Art in Salt Lake City; Ex Convento del Carmen, Guadalajara; and FOFA Gallery at Concordia University, Montreal. His work is included in numerous private and public collections, including The Mexican Museum, San Francisco; Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach; State Museum of New Jersey, Trenton; and Salt Lake County. He has received grants and fellowships from the National Performance Network, Experimental Television Center, West Chicago City Museum, Vermont Studio Center, Project Row Houses, Salt Lake Arts Council, and Taft Nicholson Center. Rojas was named one of Utah’s Most Influential Artists of 2019 by Artists of Utah /15 Bytes and his art is included in the 2020 Immigrant Artist Biennial in New York. From 2015-2021, Rojas served as Director of Learning and Engagement at the Art Museum of Utah, where he oversaw education, community engagement, and adult programming initiatives for the museum. Rojas is actively involved in the Salt Lake community as an artist, educator, curator, and is a passionate advocate for advancing racial and cultural justice through the arts.

Chiasma / Laura Sharp Wilson, curated by Scotti Hill

Chiasma explores the duality at the heart of Laura Sharp Wilson’s work – organic elements in human and botanical form as well as the visual tensions of converging patterns, linked chains and knots. In biology, “chiasma” is the process by which paired chromosomes stay together throughout the first phase of meiosis before genetic material is exchanged.

Jorge Rojas, Quantum Grid, 2021

This exhibition explores the timeline of Wilson’s process from his in-depth study of textile design, through his later apprenticeships at the Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia, to his current practice. While Laura is known for her multi-media artistic process that ranges from public art to installation and performance art, Chiasma highlights selections of her signature acrylic paintings on mulberry paper alongside works unpublished to tease the links established throughout the multifaceted career of the artist.

About the artist

Laura Sharp Wilson is a multimedia artist whose practice is primarily focused on painting, but also includes sculpture, outdoor installation, public art, curatorial and performance art. Wilson received a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an MFA from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She also studied surface pattern design at North Carolina State University and apprenticed at the Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia. In 2018 she was a resident at the Golden Foundation in New Berlin, New York. Wilson was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1965 and grew up in northern New Jersey and New York City. She currently lives and works in Salt Lake City, Utah.

About the curator

Scotti Hill (her) is a Utah-based art critic, curator, and attorney. In addition to teaching art history at Westminster College, she is a regular contributor to 15 Bytes: Utah’s Art Magazine and Southwest Contemporary and has written for Hyperallergic, Deseret News, New Art Examiner and the Center for Art Law.

Gifts of the Land of Sanpete / Jane Roberts DeGroff

In creating her work, Jane Roberts DeGroff uses the traditional Japanese dyeing technique, shibori, as well as locally harvested pigments from juniper, mugwort, curly quay seed and organic indigo.

Gifts of the Sanpete Land is a wall hanging depicting elements of life and land in the Sanpete Valley. Drawn from the beauty and natural resources of the area, the sheep were created using shibori stitching and upholstery techniques, the trees were created using guntai and karamatsu stitching, the patterns on the panels side panels have been created with stitching and binding, and the shibori panels at the top depict the beautiful mountains of the Sanpete Valley.

Laura Sharp Wilson, Middle Aged Hot Rod, 2021

The panels at the bottom were created using arashi shibori, depicting the tall grasses that once grew on the high elevation watersheds of the Wasatch Plateau in the late 1800s. At that time the area was severely overgrazed by the sheep, eventually causing catastrophic flooding in the cities of Manti and Ephraim. As a result, the people of Sanpete requested the federal government to create a reserve area for research and study. The scientific practice of range management formally began in Sanpete County, and in 1912 the Great Basin Research Station (now known as the Great Basin Station) was established at Ephraim Canyon for the study rangeland and forest management.

An integral aspect of Jane Roberts DeGroff’s work as a textile artist includes foraging in the landscape to collect plant matter. When collecting plant material, she strives to do so in such a way that no one notices that she was there. This activity not only produces dyes, but is a reminder of its continued reliance and connection to the earth – an enduring belief that we have a responsibility to consider the needs of the earth, and our gratitude for its generosity is an element essential in the treatment. for that.

About the artist

Jane Roberts DeGroff is a textile artist specializing in shibori techniques and natural dyes. She grew up on a dairy farm near the small town of Etna Wyoming and attended Brigham Young University where she earned a BFA. After college, Jane stayed in Utah, and the desire for a rural life eventually brought her, her husband and five children to Spring City.

Almost a decade ago, Jane discovered shibori and began to learn the ancient art of hand-dyeing in reserve. She is passionate about creating patterns and images on fabric by manipulating fabric in various ways to create resins before dyeing. Jane uses natural dyes on silk and cotton, including dyes made from plants harvested near her home.


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Clifton L. Boyd