Trustman Art Gallery

Material Matters

Gerri Rachins and Stephanie Roberts-Camello

February 3 - March 2

Opening Reception:
Thursday, February 16, 5-7 p.m.

Simmons University presents Material Matters, an exhibition of collage and paintings by Gerri Rachins and encaustic reliefs by Stephanie Roberts-Camello, from February 3 – March 2 at the Trustman Art Gallery, located on the fourth floor, Main College Building, 300 The Fenway in Boston.

A reception will be held on Thursday, February 9 from 5-7 P.M., with a snow date of February 16. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

This exhibition brings together two artists who are engaged in divergent approaches to the usual, two-dimensional form of painting. Rachins and Roberts-Camello both access their personal history using drawings and family letters, respectively, to create something new as well as a pentimento of the past. The artists break the frame, play with shape and form inconsistent with their source material, and utilize eye-popping color.

Gerri Rachins received her MFA from Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and has recently been awarded a 2017 residency grant for the Vermont Studio Center. Her three series presented at the Trustman Gallery, Red HerringsPoprocks and Poprock Panoramas, explore her interest in the complexity of human perception. Red Herring 2754 is a collage of residual drawing fragments, graphite, ink and gouache on panel. The work casts subtle shadows where the painted underside glows and reflects on the wall surface. The irregular blue, red and yellow shapes act as unifiers in the jagged construction. The work is a series of accretions; each layer hides and reveals.

Stephanie Roberts-Camello is a graduate of Rhode Island School of Design. In her series Encaustic Shrouds, she builds her surface by layering with material in a sculptural way. Dark Spaces, an encaustic relief over rusted paper and graphite text, hides most of the text with the crumpled “curtain” of blue and yellow. Its color and shape echoes a wave; is it washing away the text or burying it? Her wax is a product of her own honeybees. In many of the works, the text is comprised of old family letters. The manipulation of the wax, color and text conveys a sense of time and transformation.

Both Rachins and Roberts-Camello physically manipulate, collage, paint and create irregular shapes using their media to invite us to look more closely and understand that the past underlies the present.

The Gallery continues its Lunchtime Lecture Series on Thursday, February 21, from noon-1:00 P.M. with Professor Gregory Slowik, of the Department of Art and Music, presenting The Muse Strikes Again: A Musical Interlude.

Trustman Art Gallery hours are 10 AM – 4:30 PM, Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, 10 AM – 7 PM on Wednesday and Thursday. The gallery is free, open to the public and wheelchair accessible. For more information, contact Kyle Mendelsohn at (617) 521-2268 or find us on Instagram.