Alyson Shotz

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Alyson Shotz

Sep 14 — Nov 30, 2020

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 Alyson Shotz presents a series of four new etchings by the New York-based sculptor.  Alyson Shotz uses media such as glass, acrylic, mirrored steel, beading, and wire to construct massive illusory sculptures that transform the space around them. She manipulates material in a way that the works appear to hover mid-air, defying nature. “Nature is such a big part of what I do,” she has said. “I believe strongly that the physical world has a lot to teach us. There are things that I see happen when I’m working with a material that tell me something about gravity, space, force. I’m interested in showing that idea through the artwork.”

The larger-than-life scale of her work leads to an immersive and evolving experience. Her iridescent sculptures shimmer and ripple in reaction to their surroundings, creating a kaleidoscopic effect. From intersecting wire ellipses to spiraling steel structures, Shotz offers an elegant visual display of scientific knowledge. A few of the concepts she refers to are string theory, sound waves, Möbius strips, and astrophysics. By combining complex scientific phenomena with art, Shotz creates work that is unforgettable.

In 2019, for her second project at Crown Point Press, Alyson Shotz made four etchings in muted tones of green, blue, purple, and gray. This is a departure from her first project in early 2013, which consisted of a small rainbow-colored portfolio of five origami-like images and four larger works printed in pale pink. The new etchings focus on tangled bunches of knots, a subject that Shotz began investigating in 2003. Knots have a long history in human culture dating back to prehistoric times, serving a variety of purposes from aesthetics to spiritual symbolism.

Shotz is interested in the concept of mathematical knots and their representation in a three-dimensional space. After observing tangled balls of wire in her studio, she used 3D modeling software to recreate them. In a2014 book published by Derek Eller Gallery, she explainshow3D software is an integral part of planning her sculptures. “The ability to solve problems in a virtual space of three dimensions enabled me to conceive and construct things that would not have been possible using only pen and paper,” she wrote. In her new etchings, she has flattened the three-dimensional knots to become two-dimensional images. The knots seem to be alive as lines weave and loop through one another in an endless continuum.

We are welcoming one-party visits to the gallery by appointment. Please phone us at (415) 974-6273 or send an email to Valerie Wade to set up a time. Our summer hours are Monday-Friday, 9AM-5PM.

Alyson Shotz. Knot Theory (green) — 2019. Color aquatints on gampi paper chine collé printed in editions of 20 by Courtney Sennish. Each print measures 18-x-12-inches on a 22½-x-16-inch sheet.