Artists-in-Residency Arrive at Morgan Conservatory
RESIDENCY PROGRAMS provide the time, space and right facilities to help artists make great leaps in their way of thinking and approach to work. “Residencies are key in the lives of artists that are unable to support their practice full time. With a residency like the Morgan’s, artists have the opportunity to take time away from their daily schedules and focus for an uninterrupted period of time on their art practice,” says program creator, Radha Pandey.
Beginning in March and extending through November, the Morgan will host six artists-in-residence. As an artist herself, Radha recognized the potential to assist others in creating and expanding their work using the space, equipment and facilities available at the Morgan.
After finishing a graphic design degree in India, she moved to pursue an MFA in Book Arts at The University of Iowa’s Center for the Book. Eventually, her path led her to become the Morgan’s Studio Coordinator. “I wanted to work at the Morgan because of my interest in handmade paper. It is one of the few places in the U.S. making production paper by hand today,” she says.
Although Radha has since left the Morgan to pursue teaching and creating artists’ books, the program continues to evolve and strengthen as it moves into its second year. This year’s residents include Elaine Battles, Anna Wagner, Joey Behrens, Nicole Donnelly, Cara Lynch and Hong Hong, who come from a diverse spectrum of arts backgrounds and will pursue unique projects during their time at the Morgan.
Elaine Battles is a sculptor who frequently works with porcelain. She will be using her time at the Morgan to create sculptures from abaca pulp. “Though porcelain and abaca are different materials, because of their similar properties they are both translucent. When the light passes through an object, what you think of as solid is actually not, and that translucency, for me, creates a sense of the sacred,” she says.
Anna Wagner finds satisfaction in the hands-on nature of antiquated techniques such as hand-drawn rendering, ink wash, etching on copper and carving wood. Her grandfather collected etchings and lithographs and her father printed antiquated photographs for Albumen Works. In a digital age, she seeks to preserve the fine art of hand-printing. During her residency, she will be transforming seven ink wash drawings into etchings.
“Intellectually, I appreciate how much can be done with new media. In practice, however, digital media frustrates me because the process of making it is largely intangible. I think physically manipulating material is fun, and I feel good when the result of my work exists immediately as a physical object,” she says.
Joey Behrens’ background spans painting, drawing and printmaking. During her short two-week residency, she will create a series of small wooden forms covered in sheets of overbeaten flax. “I think a limited time frame can be very helpful, as it requires you to focus. You really have to be prepared to hit the ground running. You also have to remain open and responsive: things go wrong, accidents or mistakes can create unforeseen possibilities. Two weeks isn’t enough time to make a body of work, however, it is enough time to really start to dig into something, to dive deeper and stoke a fire,” she says.
Nicole Donnelly will be using the facilities at the Morgan to complete a series of handmade paper and print artworks based on her experiences in the Mojave Desert. Ecology and environmental issues are central to her art making process. She sustainably produces many of her own raw materials to create imagery that reflects the often negated responsibility to conserve the natural world.
“Having such high regard for conservation of the environment, when I came to papermaking, I felt that I finally had found the process that perfectly supports and mirrors my concepts. In paper, I found a medium that both is nature and has the ability to mimic it,” says Nicole.
Cara Lynch’s residency will be her first time visiting Cleveland from New York. She will be creating a new body of work in the papermaking studio using denim. Whether it’s tacky, tasteful, utilitarian or fashionable — she is interested in the associations denim has as a working class, American material. “My interest in denim comes from my interest in class and value. It is also personally significant for me as it was very present during my childhood. We had an unusual amount of denim decor around the house,” she says.
Hong Hong is an artist who often works on a large-scale. During her residency, she will conduct a series of material, relief, and sculptural studies in paper. She will also utilize the Morgan’s garden lot to begin a series of large-scale, poured paper works. “I think I have always been searching for, in my own work, the sensation of being something very small held in something much larger,” says Hong.
The Morgan Art of Papermaking Conservatory & Educational Foundation
1754 East 47th Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44103
National Juried Art Exhibition of Works on Paper at the Morgan Conservatory
March 31 – April 29
Workshop Instructors Exhibition
May 5 – September 15
Papermaking with Pants | May 6 – 7, 10 am – 4 pm
Pressure Printing | May 6, 10 am – 4 pm
Dingbats! | May 20 – 21, 10 am – 4 pm
Natural Dyeing | May 20 – 21 pm 10 am – 4 pm
To register for a workshop & for more details, please visit our website morganconservatory.org or call 216.361.9255