BAYarts' June galleries focus on home
Reflecting on a sense of home, two local artists have combined forces to take over both BAYarts galleries this June. In "Relics of Memory: Assembled Visions," Chad Cochran and Debra Sue Solecki will be showcasing mixed media assemblage artwork.
Solecki's collaged compositions are all inspired by a specific location. "I was intrigued by the strong connection people feel towards their homeland," says the artist. "I started this series based on the observation that humans seem tied to specific places they call home."
Her pieces employ actual maps that are then layered for a "dreamlike vision of the location." Says Solecki: "A viewer who is familiar with that location will draw deeper meaning into the piece building a stronger connection to the images they see."
Layers are the key. "The mixed media compositions are assembled in layers of drawing, paper collage, found objects and paint. In a similar way, the work reveals itself in layers," remarks the artist, who is keen on giving attention to specifics. "There are details that may not be instantly noticed but are discovered as more time is spent viewing the piece."
Born in the small Ohio spot of Fredericktown, Cochran grew up with the wish to escape his rural roots. After time in Bowling Green State University and Columbus, he experienced a pull back towards small town life with its rustic appeal. Now residing in Bay Village, his art explores an intrinsic interest in a vintage aesthetic. The beauty of his dilapidated rural scenes taps in on a nostalgic aesthetic.
"'Relics of Memory' will focus on what 'home' means to a person," explains Cochran. "It could be a physical structure, it could be a key, an object and so on. It's about something that creates the connection back to what you remember 'home' being."
Employing intuitive invention, Cochran will be dipping into imagined pasts. "I try to create something that looks like you would find it, should you venture into one of these homes and bring out belongings which were left behind, then assemble a tribute." These tributes have no short list of components. "I use a lot of old wood, barn wood, nails, pages from books, bedding, curtains, skeleton keys, the insides of a storage trunk, parts of chairs, parts of windows, family photos, photos of homes. The way I approach this is there are tiny fragments which help create our memories. I utilize parts of homes, which people may remember where their house key was hung, what kind of lock was on the window, what did their mattress look like, what did the curtains smell like, what books were in your house? I then help 'construct memories' from these items."
Food for the gallery reception will be provided by Well Done Catering of Westlake.
The opening reception is Friday, June 9, from 6-9 p.m.
Jessica Stockdale is the Marketing Manager at BAYarts.