Richard Speer reviews Carrie Iverson's Correspondence (Willamette Week)

Carrie Iverson, Redacted, 2011
kilnformed glass, 48.125 x 24.125 x .5 inches

(excerpt) When we gaze back over our lives, whether through rose-colored or gray-tinted glasses, we see either sunlit halcyon afternoons or dark nights of the soul filled with “What if…?” and regret. This month, Carrie Iverson and Stephen Scott Smith turn their very different lenses on the machinations of memory and the relationship between the past and present. Iverson’s Correspondence at Bullseye Gallery unflinchingly explores the memory loss experienced by the artist’s father. When you walk into the sepulchral, windowless exhibition gallery, you enter a world of gray: mixed-media works in a grayscale palette that wash over you like a bank of fog. Here, all that was once distinct has blurred; all that was congealed has dispersed, like a web of neurons that has frayed and torn. The artist has taken objects associated with her father and transmogrified them into elegies in paper, kiln-formed glass and chalkboards on which all writing has been obscured into messy indecipherability. A milky glass plank called Redacted (which would have been a chilling title for the exhibition itself) evokes diary pages that have faded or been erased. Iverson conjures an atmosphere of sfumato and stone-washed memories, in which all concretes have eroded into ghostly traces of their erstwhile referents. This is a technically assured and courageous inquiry into the disappearance and endurance of memory. (excerpt) - Richard Speer

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September 7, 2011