|The Art of the Book
Sixth Annual Exhibition of Handmade Books,
Altered Books and Book Related Works
more work by Emily Payne
Emily Payne was born in San Francisco and grew up in Mill Valley, California and Amherst, Massachusetts. She and her three siblings walked to school until the seventh grade, when their seemingly all knowing bus driver picked them up in front of their house and delivered them, slightly carsick, to school.
She went to Oberlin College where she studied English and Women’s Studies. The class she remembers most was an Art History lecture on how Cezanne’s brushstrokes mimicked the way the eye perceives information, by scanning an object or landscape, rather than taking it in as a whole. She eventually grew to appreciate the flatness of the land and the long, barely curving roads in Ohio. Emily moved to San Francisco after college and studied figure drawing and oil painting. Her love of making sculptural things with paper led her to pursue an MFA in printmaking and book arts at San Francisco State University. In the midst of busy, often noisy classrooms, she anchored her concentration with heavy, low tech but utterly reliable tools like the letterpress, the book press and a beat up wooden ceramics table she found abandoned in the corner of the sculpture lab. It became her makeshift studio space.
About her influences, she says, “A sculpture by Ruth Asawa hung in my parent’s study, and I remember being struck by a photograph we had of her building one of her wire hanging pieces on her studio floor, surrounded by three of her six children. I admire artists who fold their art into many aspects of their lives, so that there is very little divide between being a creative person and living life.”
Ground to Stand On
book covers and spines, glue, 47 x 99 inches
Emily Payne makes big color field sculptures out of used book covers and spines. Her studio is filled with all these gorgeous colors which she pieces together to make a glorious abstract work. The textures and colors are so unique they give the piece a very special presence. They don't scream "book", though they are entirely made of the back of the part of the book most easily seen. Stil,l that association with books rings through and the viewers find themselves relating to the work on a visceral level.
Emily Payne will have a one person installation and exhibition in the gallery from September 1 through October 15th, 2011