SHERIDAN — Throughout the month of October and continuing into early November, the Whitney Center for the Arts will display art from Madelin Coit, a New Mexico-based multimedia artist.
In the exhibit, “Interface/Interstice,” on display in the Edward A. Whitney Gallery, Coit utilized editions of The Sheridan Press to create the installation.
In her artist statement, Coit said, “The colors and photos in The Sheridan Press became design elements to be folded and shaped. I embraced the impermanence and flexibility of the material.
“Its non-preciousness made for experimentation that quickly developed into room-sized sculptures,” she continued. “…Akin to the painting term ‘pentimento,’ there is a deconstruction of layers which declares itself in my work as experienced moments, clumped and aggregated to form a larger whole, which then is erased, built upon, torn down and reconstructed.”
The show will be on display through Nov. 11. It is free and open to the public.
Recently, The Press had the chance to conduct a quick Q&A with Coit about her work. Here’s the result:
The Sheridan Press: When did you first start making art?
Coit: I was very young. Like most children I liked to mess with things, draw, take things apart, cut things up. The usual. The rule was I was responsible for the clean up — whatever that means to a toddler. As in all things one gets better with practice.
TSP: When and how did you decide to become a professional artist?
Coit: I became an artist before I understood what ‘professional’ would mean. Such as the studio expenses.
TSP: What’s your favorite medium in which to work? Why?
Coit: My practice is multimedia. I choose the medium as I am working. Certain ideas are best expressed in neon or shadow or steel or paint or performance.
TSP: Why did you decide to start working with newspapers to create art?
Coit: Ucross Foundation awarded a residency to me and I filled my car with every medium I could think of that I might want to use. Most of my work is done in very expensive materials. When I got to Ucross I looked around for something that would be good for fast sketch. The office had a stack of Sheridan Press and New York Times and they gave them to me — a form of recycling. It was refreshing and inexpensive and could be tossed with no sense of waste. I was brought up with “waste not want not.”
TSP: How many newspapers have you worked with?
Coit: I have used The New York Times, The Sheridan Press and THE MAGAZINE.
TSP: What do the newspapers represent to you?
Coit: They are free of restrictions or hampering conventions. They are donated and recycled. They are from oxygen producing units (trees). In their cooked pulp form they are held, utilized, repurposed, stared at and sometimes seen.
The video portion of the installation, which was done at The Jentel Residency, ended with imagery of the tousled papers cascading into a dumpster — very beautiful and joyous — and amusing.