Another World: Works by Violet Byrd

  • Ongoing: until Monday, February 10, 2014
  • Monday: 10:00am
  • Tuesday: 10:00am
  • Wednesday: 10:00am
  • Thursday: 10:00am
  • Friday: 10:00am
  • Where: Chandler Gallery, 20 Sacramento Street, Cambridge, MA
  • Cost: Free
  • Age limit: All ages

Artist Violet Byrd chose “Another World” as the title of her exhibit after reading an article that made her realize how otherworldly artists can seem, even to those who buy, sell and appreciate their art. “With this title,” says Byrd. “I frame the exhibition as an introduction to a stranger who may be known through a series of objects and images.” Byrd’s 2D and 3D works in cut paper depict “hybrid life forms of fantastic creatures.” The creatures made of black paper invite the viewer to step closer to discern the layers within each silhouette, while the white paper creatures emphasize both the negative space surrounding each shape and the rainbow of shadows beyond. “Matisse described scissors and paper as ultimate drafting tools,” says Byrd. “I think of cutting paper as drawing with scissors.”

The pieces may look fragile, but Byrd packs heavy ideas into their sprightly forms. Byrd’s most recently finished piece—and therefore her current favorite—“Old Lady Who Knew the Seeds and Carried the Janus,” contains an optical illusion as the figure’s wavy edges change from sleeves to faces and back again. According to Byrd, this piece explores three different concepts: “genetically-modified seeds, looking forward and backward in time, and the ability to predict based on actions.” The complexity is characteristic of Byrd’s work. Past series include "Alien-Insect and Other Types of Women" and "Answers to Existential Questions,” which uses photography and vector animation to delve into psychological and philosophical matters. Says Byrd, “With my art-making practice, I explore meaning in the world, then observe ideas translated into the intuitive language of visual art.”

“Another World” is on display at the Chandler Gallery from January 13 through February 14, 2014 with an opening reception on Thursday, January 16, from 6-8 pm. A preview of Byrd’s work can be seen in the Maud Morgan Arts Porter Square window display.

This event was posted Dec. 18, 2013 and last updated Sept. 20, 2016