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Sylvia Schwartz
Sylvia Schwartz 9, 2018, wood, fabric, paint. 10' x 16" x 2"




Schwartz received a degree in fine art from the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne, Australia, and later studied sculpture at Columbia University. Her work has been shown in exhibitions in Manhattan, New Jersey, and Brooklyn, including BWAC, Nurture Art, ODETTA, Lesley Heller Gallery and the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey. She lives and works in New York City. For centuries textiles have been significant to the communication of identity for both the individual and collective psyche. Across the globe they have marked the passage of life cycle and community cycle events, worked into ceremonies involving birth, marriage and death. Entire nations have employed textiles as a representational tool of patriotism, from military uniforms to regional flags. In addition to signaling membership within organizations, class distinctions, and professions, textiles have permitted individuals to distinguish themselves and experiment with alternate identities. The western art tradition of stretched canvas is further loaded with associations. Dressing Up and Queen each begin with the “neutral” blank slate that canvas has signified for centuries while adopting layered meanings by remaining un-stretched. The grid created by the fold lines continues the formalist grid of abstract expressionism. Like the abstract expressionists, these works exist as segments that extend beyond their physical boundaries. Their formation shifts between the spontaneous and the calculated. Each is composed with a combination of painting, sewing, and the incorporation of 3D-printed plastic objects, together notable for their temporal contrasts. The paint is immediate. Sewing the fabric is delayed in that the placement of pieces must be determined before the stitches can bind it together. The free flowing forms allow for a different rhythm of accident and improvisation. The 3D printed forms are removed from the human hand, while being programmed. It is the relationship between intended and unintended that adds this dimension of delayed time and chaos. Sylvia Schwartz works with fabric, paper, plaster, resin, plastic, and photography. Schwartz has worked extensively at Dieu Donne Papermill, primarily casting with molds made directly from findings on the beach. Her work focuses on themes of movement and stillness, incorporating textiles, found objects, and forms from nature washed up on the shore.


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