On View at the Boise Art Museum, October 5, 2013 - April 27, 2014
CONTEXT Art Miami – Seager Gray Gallery, Booth E5.
Seager Gray Gallery will be exhibiting new work that I have made specifically for the fair. I am excited to be visiting the fair this year. If you are planning to be in Miami, please stop by and say hello.
We produced a special catalog, with an essay by Paul Liberatore, for my solo show at the Boise Art Museum and other selected works which will be available at the fair. From the essay: There is no more iconic symbol of America than the gunslinging cowboy. In Hollywood movies and western novels, the flinty-eyed cowpoke has been endlessly glamorized for winning the West at the point of a pistol, shooting first and asking questions later. In her solo show at the Boise Art Museum, How the West Was Sewn (through April 27, 2014), artist Lisa Kokin takes aim, through the beauty of her art, at the myth of the cowboy and its use by opponents of reasonable gun control laws, who argue that gun ownership is part of our American heritage. In her “Lace Cowboy” series, Kokin repurposes vintage lace and found fabrics to create cowboys and their guns that are, in her words, “frilly and ephemeral, mere shadows of their former intimidating selves. The guns are in the hands of ineffectual cowboys.”
Continue reading in catalog pdf →
SEAGER GRAY GALLERY in Miami →
ART MADE FROM BOOKS
I am pleased to announce that my work is featured in Art Made from Books, a newly released title from Chronicle Books. Expertly edited by Laura Heyenga, this beautifully designed book features the work of twenty-seven artists who use books as the raw material for their work.
Chronicle Books →
Playing with Image Transfers: Exploring Creative Imagery for Use in Art, Mixed Media, and Design
Artist and writer Courtney Cerruti has written an informative and helpful new book on image transfer techniques in which she included my work.
Quarry Books →
500 Handmade Books, Volume 2
Last but not least, my work is included in another exceptional book, 500 Handmade Books, Volume 2, by Julie Chen. It showcases the unlimited creative possibilities of books as objects and as sculptural pieces.
Lark Publications →
In the Studio
Textiles are in Lisa Kokin's blood. Her parents were upholsterers, and she uses the techniques of sewing and book arts to create detailed, thoughtful work that often transforms found objects and words. For the exhibition Do Not Destroy, she created the piece Fauxliage: No Birds Sing which transformed Rachel Carson's landmark environmental book Silent Spring into delicate and quite convincing leaf forms, a reference to the anti-pesticide message therein.
The Uncommon Thread:
Jody Alexander & Lisa Kokin
San Francisco Center for the Book
November 15, 2013 - February 1, 2014
This two-person show is curated by Donna Seager.
Catalog essay by Maria Porges.
Excerpt: "For over two decades, Lisa Kokin has explored ways to sew together image and text, using books, photographs, and, most recently, thread alone as a palette for narrative expression. Her series based on self-help books thriftily incorporates the entirety of each volume she uses – snout to tail, so to speak – in different works. The book’s covers, for instance, appear in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living (2010), cut into stylized petals sewn into bulbous, determinedly cheerful flowers (“which I hope will create eternal happiness for the viewer in five days or less,” Kokin avers.) Each of the irregular, rock-like shapes in Room For Improvement (2010) consists of the pulped pages of a single book, mashed and molded into a tiny boulder to be pushed à la Sisyphus, up the steep slope of acutely-felt personal lack towards some unattainable goal. (The size of the rock is determined by the scope of the book; surprisingly – or perhaps, not surprisingly at all – one might be a thrifty little ovoid, while another might be quite large.)"
Continue reading in catalog pdf →
How the West Was Sewn
Boise Art Museum, Boise, ID
October 5, 2013 – April 27, 2014
This solo exhibition, curated by Sandy Harthorn, features my most recent work which uses imagery and pages from recycled pulp cowboy novels.
"For the past two decades, Lisa Kokin has been at the forefront of an emerging new art form: the artist’s book. Through preservation and destruction, she utilizes book spines and covers by disguising and weaving them into colorful wall installations. The artist pushes her medium beyond the customary use. Sewing, stapling, riveting, shredding, pulping, gluing and reconstituting books salvaged from such sources as recycling centers, Kokin repurposes the discarded books into works woven with text and image that cast intricate shadows onto the walls. The branch shapes make reference to the origins of the books as trees or plant fibers."
— Sandy Harthorn, curator of art, Boise Art Museum
Boise Art Museum →
Boise Art Museum Acquisition
I am thrilled to announce that the Boise Art Museum has acquired Lost River, a large thread piece with text from Lost River Buckaroos, a cowboy book from the 1930s. Lost River is a major piece from a body of work incorporating text and imagery from cowboy novels which I began several years ago, and which will be included in my solo show at the BAM in October.
Boise Art Museum →
REUSE MUSE 2014
Words / Letters / Fragments + Recycled Materials
This six-week class January 15 — February 19
Wednesdays, 1:00 — 3:30 p.m.
The focus for Reuse Muse 2014 will be narrative, text and words and letters as abstract forms used in linear and non-linear ways to create books, collage and sculpture with recycled materials.
The class nurtures a spirit of curiosity and risk-taking, which emphasizes process as well as product. Critiques are both supportive and challenging. Beginners are welcome!
Sunnyvale Medical Center Oncology Unit
I am honored to have been selected for a commission to make a large thread leaf piece for the new Sunnyvale Medical Center Oncology Unit, part of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. Having waited in a similar clinic with my father many years ago, I am especially aware of how one feels in such a situation, and hope to make a piece which will impart a sense of peace and tranquility. The piece is scheduled to be installed in early summer of 2013.
Tiffany & Co.
Recently, I installed a commissioned work in the new Tiffany store in the Westfield Centre San Francisco. My piece, Ideal Marriage, is made from book spines arranged in a floral motif.