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Linn Meyers

May 7, 2011 - November 3, 2011

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Time is central to the work of Washington DC-based artist Linn Meyers, whose practice revolves around drawing. Each dense and intricate ink line drawing is the result of a nearly meditative process by which Meyers lays down consecutive lines into largely organic forms, creating rhythmic repetitive patterns. Each line becomes the record of a physical movement, and the inevitable inconsistencies and imperfections of the body as it moves through time and space become integral to the final composition. Meyers’s layering of vivid colors creates a shimmering quality suggestive of light and movement across the surface of the work. Working in a range of scales, Meyers has in recent years moved from the page to creating site-specific wall drawings. Ambitious in scale and labor, these drawings can take several weeks to complete, their shapes responding to the architecture of the space and the surrounding elements. For her Hammer Project, Meyers will make a large-scale, site-specific wall drawing on the Hammer’s lobby wall. This exhibition will be the artist’s first museum show in Los Angeles.

ESSAY

By Anne Ellegood

Our representations of inspiration are far from perfect for perfection is unobtainable and unattainable.
—Agnes Martin (1)

A line is the most elemental and foundational of human marks. Lines become language. They coalesce to form representations. They delineate space. And sketch out ideas. For artist Linn Meyers—for whom the hand-drawn line is a source of endless inspiration and the starting and ending point of each work—the line also marks time. Drawing’s fundamental relationship to humanity—its integral role in nearly every aspect of our lives—is at the core of Meyers’s practice. She says: “That is why I make drawings and can’t work my way into other areas of art making. I am totally enamored of the simplicity of the line. We are all familiar with the line. We all use it. We all write. It’s built into us.” (2) Trained as a painter, Meyers initially gravitated toward painting magical landscapes that embodied particular emotions. In these early pictures the horizon line was always a prominent feature. As she grew more comfortable with focusing on the feelings that the works evoked rather than the sites themselves, the horizon line disappeared, and the paintings became more atmospheric. Not wanting to divorce herself from landscape altogether, she depicted subjects that could surround the viewer, like the sky. She had let go of pictorialism, but the work was still inherently representational. While she eventually stopped including elements of landscape in her compositions, she resists the idea that her works have become wholly abstract. Nature, the horizon line, atmosphere—all these are still in the work, but now they are simply embodied within the line rather than delineated by it. By distilling her mark making to a simple line and then repeating the lines until they fill a void (however big or small), she creates works that function like a map of sorts, charting time and space. More

 

Hammer Projects is made possible with major gifts from Susan Bay Nimoy and Leonard Nimoy and The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation.

Additional generous support is provided by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission; Good Works Foundation and Laura Donnelley; L A Art House Foundation; Kayne Foundation—Ric & Suzanne Kayne and Jenni, Maggie & Saree; the Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles; and the David Teiger Curatorial Travel Fund.

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