ELISABETH MUNRO SMITH
What Goes, What Stays is an exhibition about dismantling, discarding and change. A year ago, while moving to a new studio, I disposed of many years of stored work and carted to the new space as much leftover raw materials and old pieces as would fit. As I began new work, I had to find materials consistent with the limitations of space – in a sense, changing my own self-image as an artist. The work exhibited here is constructed from materials saved from the disposal pile as well as new materials, reconfigured into new structures. They describe a complicated process of metamorphosis and travel from there to here.
I have always worked with a variety of materials – paper, paint, photographs, fibers, wire, but primarily wood, either milled wood or vines and branches that I cut from around my old studio. My main focus for a long time has been the image of the house in its landscape, as well as roads and maps that connect the house to the world beyond. A narrative unfolds through the materials: curvy vines, strips of wood, the organic and the man-made, color and form, delineating travel through time and space.