ANNIE EVELYN: MULTIPLE IMPRESSIONS
June 16, 2017 — September 2, 2017
In the Front Gallery
Artist Talk by Annie Evelyn
Saturday, September 2, 3:30 – 4:30 PM
This summer, viewers can expect to see and feel the unexpected in Annie Evelyn: Multiple Impressions, a solo exhibition of recent work by the furniture maker at Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC). Punctuated by carpeted shapes that frame her furniture, Evelyn’s installation entices the visitor to experience her craftsmanship firsthand by taking a seat. Using alternative materials to upholster her chairs, she manipulates tessellations of cement and aluminum to create comfortable, squishy seat cushions. These seemingly hard and rigid materials are so surprisingly relaxing to sit on, the experience of interacting with the work is sure to change the viewer’s first impression.
HCCC Curator, Kathryn Hall, explains her appreciation for Evelyn’s work: “At first, I was struck by the beauty of Annie’s patterned upholstery. Whether she is working with the smooth contours of river rocks, spotlighting the natural grooves embedded within tree bark, or fashioning geometric compositions from aluminum, her use of unexpected materials stirs one’s curiosity about the construction of her pieces. After getting to know Annie and visiting her studio, I began to see the parallels between her work and her charming humor and caring personality. While her ingenuity and attention to detail shine through her pieces, her furniture is not meant to be appreciated as delicate eye candy, but rather it begs to be sat upon and enjoyed.”
Evelyn continues to explore new ideas, often working on multiple projects simultaneously and sometimes collaborating with other artists. Her experimental methods tip traditional furniture making on its head. For instance, her recipe for comfort lies within the clever construction of the upholstered seat: most of her furniture includes a layer of foam that conforms to the body. In the exhibition, several unfinished samples demonstrate this process. As an interactive installation, Multiple Impressions inspires a sense of wonder and dares to confront conventions of domestic comfort.
Annie Evelyn: Multiple Impressions was curated by HCCC Curator, Kathryn Hall.
About Annie Evelyn
Annie Evelyn currently lives in Penland, North Carolina, where she is an artist-in-residence at the Penland School of Crafts. She received her BFA (1999) and MFA (2007) in furniture design from Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in Providence, Rhode Island. Evelyn has taught at Penland School of Crafts, RISD, Anderson Ranch, Parsons-The New School, and other institutions. She is the 2016 recipient of The John D. Mineck Furniture Fellowship, and, in 2011, Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Turning and Furniture Design awarded her a Windgate Furniture Residency. Her work has been featured in American Craft Magazine and in The Independent Design Guide: Products from the New Generation (2009) by Laura Housely, among other publications. She has exhibited her work around the country as well as abroad, including countries such as China, France, Italy, and Spain. Her work has been shown at Arrowmont Gallery, Gatlinburg, TN; Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design, Asheville, NC; ICFF, New York, NY; Colton Gallery, New Orleans, LA; RISD Museum, Providence, RI; and Kip Gallery, Indiana, PA.
Image credits: (1 – 4) Exhibition view of “Annie Evelyn: Multiple Impressions” at Houston Center for Contemporary Craft. Photos by Scott Cartwright. (5) Annie Evelyn, “Hexagon Armchairs,” 2017. Sapele, foam. Photo by Scott Cartwright. (6) Annie Evelyn and Ian Henderson, “Floe,” 2015. Sapele, foam, cement. 47 x 34 x 19 inches. Photo by Scott Cartwright. (7) Annie Evelyn, “Ginkgo Leaf Chair,” (2017) and “Soft Rocks,” (2015). Photo by Scott Cartwright. (8) Annie Evelyn, “Ginkgo Leaf Chair,” 2017. Leather, steel, sapele. Photo by Scott Cartwright. (9) Annie Evelyn, “Soft Rocks,” 2015. Sapele, tulip poplar bark, foam, river rocks. Photo by Scott Cartwright. (10) Annie Evelyn, “Oshibana,” 2017. Handmade paper flowers, silk flowers, foam, wood. Photo by Scott Cartwright. (12) Annie Evelyn, “Scale Lounge,” 2017. Metal scales, foam, wood. Photo by Mercedes Jelinek. (13) Annie Evelyn and Ian Henderson, “Floe” (detail), 2015. Sapele, foam, cement. 47 x 34 x 19 inches. Photo by Mercedes Jelinek. (14) Display of materials used in Annie Evelyn’s furniture pieces. Photo by Scott Cartwright.