Heuser Art Gallery
October 25-December 10, 2021
Lisa Nelson Raabe is a collage artist who creates an emotional sense of place by using pigments, metal filings, glass, bits of nature and thread in combination with acrylic mediums to transform color and texture. Using both flexible and solid surfaces, the pieces hang in space or are mounted on the wall as images.
Thai Kozo, Kinwashi and Unryu papers are pliable, highly absorbent and responsive to both fluid media and dye processes. Some pieces start with an eco dying process in which the paper is treated with a mordant and the tannins in leaves and spent flowers dye the paper. Rusted metal and bronze filings from the sculpture studio floor change from browns to blues with the addition of salt, ammonia and acrylic mediums. Thread imports geometric consistency against the spontaneous surface changes from the dye materials. Additional layers of paper obscure and reveal. The result is a transformation of material to image that transcends it’s original nature.
Hanging pieces which use tulle as their ground respond to gravity changing form, curling and bending under that weight of encased glass microspheres. Each piece offers the stillness and dichotomy of earth against sky.
The works exhibited in Sublime Idioms are investigations, questions and answers in search of a balance between the everyday and the substantive esoteric. They offer an internal world of presence, seen and felt through a density of physical materials and structured line. As Thomas Merton is quoted, “Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”
Lisa Nelson Raabe has worked as an artist, art therapist and yoga therapist, delving into the relationships between our bodies, stored emotion, thoughts and memories. As a long time textile artist, much of Lisa’s work has to do repetitive forms and processes, stitch by stitch, moment by moment, the creation of pliable planes and experiments in material studies.
Lisa lives with her husband, poet and writer Burton Raabe and their cat Zorba.
all photos Evan Temchin unless otherwise noted