In her latest installation A Porous Space, Deborah Boardman emulates the architecture of Romanesque churches. Situated to maximize the energy of existing currents of underground waterways and magnetic circuits known as ley lines, the design was intended to augment the experience of spiritual transformation and healing inside the structure. Likewise her installation aims to connect with unseen energies of the Heskin Contemporary space and community through highlighting existing connections and forging new ones. The installation, working with the existing divisions of space, consists of several components: recycled cardboard flooring, a participatory line video, drawings and paintings of her personal working and living space, and three artist books, Remedies, Animal Life and A Porous Space.
Catskill-based dowsers energetically measured the Heskin Contemporary space, influencing the six layers deep cardboard flooring pattern based on the divination findings. Fabricated with recycled cardboard collected from the building's own waste stream and from neighboring buildings, the flooring thus becomes a composite of cardboard used locally, very much hand made and infused with histories both local and global.
The Line Video emphasizes the individuality of the hand while connecting each participant in moments of unresolve that continually reoccur. Tests of this project were performed at Koscielak Gallery in November 2007 and at the School of the Chicago Art Institute in April 2009, and most recently at Heskin Contemporary in July 2009. Individually painted lines compose one continuous line, which will be projected from above onto a recycled cardboard tabletop.
Remedies, Animal Life and A Porous Space are large format unique painted artist books comprised of drawings and paintings of Boardman's studio space, pets and Romanesque French churches she visited. The artists book provide an intimate, hands on experience of painting as a lived activity.
Drawings and Paintings
Quantities of pencil drawings, gouaches and oil paintings, hung grid style in the gallery's back space provide a view into the rituals of studio practice.
Combined, the elements of A Porous Space provide a rich and layered experience, emphasizing the human hand, flux, drawing and painting as a messy daily practice, reiterating a history of the familiar and connecting it with the sacred spaces of the French churches.
Ms. Boardman received her MFA from Tufts University-School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Medford, MA and her BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, MA. She is currently an instructor at the School of The Art Institute of Chicago, and has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards. Her most recent was the Roger Brown Artist Residency, the Illinois Arts Council Visual Arts Fellowship and the Gilmore Foundation Grant. Deborah is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, NY and the Art Institute of Chicago, Ryerson and Burnham Library. This is Ms. Boardman’s first solo exhibition at Heskin Contemporary.