Elizabeth Armstrong & Katie Dunbar It Is What It Is
Artist Talk Place September 8, 2012
Description Through the theme, “it is what it is,” artists Katie Dunbar and Elizabeth J. Armstrong are presenting both solo and collaborative works. The collaboration between the two women called, It Is What It Is, will accumulate in a time-based piece that will evolve over the course of the two month installation. Starting with a simple four by four post the two will add and subtract elements to the object without communicating verbally to each other. Each week the artists will come individually at predetermined times and work for a set shift. They will have to respond to what the other has done in their absence and be flexible to reach an undetermined goal. This project is in response to wanting to make art for art’s sake. It puts the value of art making in the process and the excitement in the unknown.
Katie Dunbar’s piece titled, Bristles, acknowledges and represents this overlooked element of a toothbrush. By significantly increasing size to emphasize presence, Dunbar urges viewers to form an entirely new connection and experience with the common material good.
Elizabeth J. Armstrong’s work consists of two separate engagements both focusing on the main theme of “it is what it is.” The first is a collaborative project in which she invited friends and family to make art with her via the U.S. Postal service. Feeling somewhat disconnected to those around her, she looked for a way to bond with both the people and art that are important to her. The second body of work is a series of intuitively made sculptures which look at transitions, and transformation.
Bio: Katie Dunbar Katie Dunbar’s practice investigates common material items encountered daily, to recreate moments of discovery and recognition. By carefully forming objects at an unfamiliar scale, she hopes to offer viewers a new connection with particular items that are frequently overlooked. Dunbar’s own daily life is often overwhelmingly packed with various tasks. Because of this, she feels it is critical to slow down and take note of smaller instances, creating a sense of appreciation for our everyday.
Dunbar lives and works in Portland, Oregon. She received her Bachelor’s of Fine Art from University of California, Santa Cruz in 2009, and her Masters in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2011. www.katiedunbar.com
Bio: Elizabeth J. Armstrong Through art Elizabeth J. Armstrong is searching for a greater understanding of humanity and self. By exaggerating and questioning specific experiences, she hopes to emphasize her existence and how it relates to others. She spends a lot of time thinking about existential philosophy and psychology and is interested in presenting these themes. She is also concerned with letting go of the perceived control around a finished art piece, and frequently set up constraints, which make total control improbable.
Armstrong lives and works in Portland, OR. She received her Bachelor’s of Fine Art from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2012. She has shown locally in both solo and group shows and is one half of the art collaboration group P.R.E.A.