New Exhibit at the Flinn Gallery – Art from Recycled and Found Materials

The artists and curators at the opening: Alice Hope, Ruth (curator), Constance Old, Jonathan Mess, Joanne Ungar, Sallie (curator) and Jaynie Crimmons. Credit: Karen Sheer

The artists and curators at the opening: Alice Hope, Ruth Sutcliffe (curator), Constance Old, Jonathan Mess, Joanne Ungar, Sallie Baldwin (curator) and Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Reclaim Reprocess seeks to inspire and challenge people to think about how we can reuse waste in creative and innovative ways.

53,040 Tabs, 2016 by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

53,040 Tabs, 2016 by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

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Situational Factors 4, 2015 by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

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Valentine #26, by Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

The show runs through until January 18, 2017 and features five contemporary artists who have applied their talents to create works that utilize discarded materials and the by-products of today’s consumer culture to create works of art.

At the opening reception, crowds of admirers gathered to see the recycled materials turned into art, in various compositions, and chat with the five artists.

Artist Alice Hope and Ruth at the opening. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist Alice Hope and curator Ruth Sutcliffe at the opening, with a tall piece by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Using imagination and aesthetic sensibility, they have crafted pieces that please the eye while offering respite from the environmental burden of accumulated waste.

This timely exhibit addresses environmental concerns while delighting viewers with aesthetically exciting pieces that reflect the same ingenuity that inspired earlier generations to craft patchwork quilts and rag rugs.

An admirer takes a close up look at works by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

An admirer takes a close up look at works by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Safeguarding the environment is an issue of mounting public concern, and it seems fitting to display the works of artists who produce thoughtful creations that address the issue.

Getting a closer look at a work by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Getting a closer look at a work by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Art can provide solutions to challenges. Art has impact. It can change the way people see themselves and the world. With ideas and action, artists champion causes, call for a response to issues and offer solutions.

On display - works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

On display – works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Curators

Curators Sallie Balwin and Ruth Sutcliffe. Credit: Karen Sheer

We all know that you’re supposed to reduce, reuse and recycle, but for artists, reuse and recycle often have totally different meanings than they do for the rest of us. Here are 5 artists specializing in making trash into artistic treasures.

Constance Old employs a rug hooking technique to design three-dimensional wall hangings from everyday materials like recycled paper, plastic, and construction fencing. Influenced by rug hooking of colonial America, the artist pulls strands through grids to create her three dimensional wall pieces. Old says “living in an era of material excess, it intrigues me to work in a medium that originated from need and a scarcity of materials.” She adds “1,000 phrases in my head (the name of a series) led to these works… to get them out of my head.” Recycled stickers build letter forms.

Artist, Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist, Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Valentine # 26 by Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Valentine # 26 by Constance Old. Credit: Karen Sheer

Jaynie Crimmins uses shredded junk mail rolled into tiny elements and stitched together like her grandmothers crocheted rugs to create pieces with textural surfaces reflecting nature’s harmony. She has been shredding for almost a decade including financial papers, a process she calls “obsessive.” The artist explains, “I use metallic ink paper, which is not recyclable… much of my work is inspired by nature and the ocean.”

Artist Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Accumulation # 6 by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Accumulation # 6 by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Jaynie Crimmins. Credit: Karen Sheer

Jonathan Mess, a sculptor, reclaims ceramic pieces and reshapes them using casting slip and discarded glazes fired at different temperatures in cardboard molds producing “abstract landforms.” Mess has developed a low-waste making system by collecting discarded ceramic materials and recycling them into new forms. “Many pieces are sliced with industrial stonecutting saws after firing to reveal fascinating cross sections and material interaction.”

Artist Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Reclaim Slab No. 26: Cross Sections, 2015 by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Reclaim Slab No. 26: Cross Sections, 2015 by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Reboxed Vase # 6, 2015 and Reboxed Vase # 4 by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Reboxed Vase # 6, 2015 and Reboxed Vase # 4 by Jonathan Mess. Credit: Karen Sheer

Joanne Ungar focuses her attention on today’s excessive packaging by using layered wax and pigments on recycled cartons to form collages. “The images are achieved by unfolding cosmetic, lightbulb and nail polish discarded cardboard boxes – adding layers of wax creates translucency.” With much surface and depth the pieces are much more beautiful in person, the dripping of color onto the side edges is visually appealing.

Artist, Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist, Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Works by Joanne Ungar. Credit: Karen Sheer

Alice Hope directs her talents to repurposing objects whose use has expired like aluminum can tabs into artworks that suggest a new dimension of scale, pattern, and placement. The artist has explored the conceptual possibilities of the can tab as an emblem of consumption, desire, and the urban myth. Through an immense Good Samaritan collective collecting drive the artist obtained 700 pounds of individual tabs which are used to create 53,040 Used Tabs, 2016. Hope expresses, “yes, 53,040 tabs were used to create this piece; the numeric evidence of how insanely much we consume.”

Artist Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Artist Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Untilted, 2015 by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Untilted, 2015 by Alice Hope. Credit: Karen Sheer

Getting an up-close look at Untitled, 2013 (ball chain, anodized aluminum)

Getting an up-close look at Untitled, 2013 (ball chain, anodized aluminum.) Credit: Karen Sheer

Reclaim Reprocess is a visual tribute to artistic imagination unleashed to call attention to today’s environmental concerns about waste. These artists have turned detrius into décor.

Reclaim Reprocess has been curated by Ruth Sutcliffe Heagney and Sallie Baldwin.

Creative spirits among us enliven our existence. Enjoy this show, which is visionary, stimulating and whimsical.

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

Curators Sallie Baldwin and Ruth with Barbara Richards (center.) Credit: Karen Sheer

Curators Sallie Baldwin and Ruth Sutcliffe with Barbara Richards (center.) Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

At the opening reception. Credit: Karen Sheer

Within the song “Everything Old Is New Again” written by Peter Allen and co-written with Carole Bayer Sager – its lyrics contain the essence of this show (the song first appeared on his 1974 album Continental American.)

“Don’t throw the pa-ast away

You might need it some rainy day

Dreams can come true again

When everything old is new again”

Events:
January 7
Artist Talk in the gallery, 11 am

January 14
Artist Talk in the Gallery, 2 to 4 pm
Joanne Ungar and Jaynie Crimmins

The Flinn Gallery, sponsored by the Friends of the Greenwich Library, is located on the second floor of the library’s main branch at 101 West Putnam Avenue, Greenwich CT.

The gallery is open daily Monday to Saturday 10-5, Thursday until 8, and Sunday 1-5. For more information, please call the gallery: 203.622.7947 www.flinngallery.com


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