Offramp Gallery is pleased to present Forget Me Not, a solo exhibition of new work by artist Susan Sironi from March 16 - April 20, 2014. Forget Me Not is Sironi's third solo exhibition at Offramp Gallery. There will be a special preview for Spring 2014 ArtNight Pasadena on Friday, March 14 from 6-10pm. There will be an opening reception for the artist on Sunday, March 16 from 2-5pm.
Using vintage books as source material, Sironi alters the books into intricate 3-D collages. She pairs the books with accompanying components made from left-over or source material, creating small, visually intriguing and thought-provoking installations. Four of the gallery walls (48 linear feet) will be wrapped with a "timeline" collage using old piano rolls as a template and left-over cuttings from the vintage books as imagery. A large interactive "sandbox" is filled with minute cuttings from the books. Several collages made from cuttings will also be on display.
Over the last ten years I have been using vintage books as an initial source material, altering them into sculptural collages that reflect on history and/or the past. When I decide on a book that has either pictorial or written content that I would like to use, I scan the pages (keeping the book intact) and create a digitized version of the book with the pages sequenced exactly as the original book. I edit this file until satisfied and then print out the file to act as a guide for cutting the actual book. The process of scanning, editing and final cutting can take from three weeks to three months depending on the complexity of the cutting and/or the thickness of the book.
During the cutting of the book I am always curious about the removed material. After several years of accumulating and contemplating these left-over pieces I realized they also tell a story. I decided to pair them visually with player piano rolls to create a collaged timeline.
I am intrigued by the notion that the player piano rolls represent an abstraction of information, holes punched in rolls of paper that designate a musical score. Using the piano roll as a template I stencil the holes onto multi sheets of paper. I then collage removed pieces of image and text from the cut books onto this paper as a kind of surrogate abstraction for events and time. The collage is then layered with a Plexiglas frame onto which I have silk-screened broken lines of text that are unreadable.
These lines of text are the transcribed notes and writings I amassed as I was working on the books. I removed the center portion of the lines of text to assure that they would remain unreadable. I did this so the text would be pure to my thoughts without any consideration that it would ever be read by anyone.
The timeline, while based on the progression of a piano score, is not intended to be a linear recording of events or actions, but an inference that history can be flowing and repetitive without beginnings or endings.
Susan Sironi, Forget Me Not, 2014, altered book
Susan Sironi, Timeline, 2014, collage & mixed media, detail