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Mary Temple


Mixed Greens is thrilled to announce a solo exhibition of Mary Temple’s new work. For years, Temple has studied architecture, memory, and light to create impossible, trompe l’oeil shadows in unlikely spaces. Using various media including paper, video and installation, she investigates the urge to make a poignant moment last indefinitely.

In her large-scale installation, Temple paints light in a windowless room. Seemingly ripped from another locale, sheet rock walls and a hardwood floor are placed in the gallery context. “As in a trompe l’oeil still life, we believe we are experiencing space, but instead of it being contained behind a picture plane, it is a space that expands out into fictitious daylight. In this way, Temple merges still life with landscape painting, freezing a lie of artificial atmospheric conditions onto a canvas of walls and floor.”*

Through video, a subway tunnel–usually dark and claustrophobic–is transformed into a room with a view, where the rumble of a train mixes with moving shadows of trees and the subtle song of a bird. The viewer inhabits a liminal space between inside and outside as the light moves down the wall of the tunnel and disappears into the tracks.

Finally, in the paper pieces, one large sheet of paper is folded to make a room. Windows are cut out, it is lit from the exterior and light is painted on the walls and floor. Then, Temple unfolds the room and hangs it on the wall. The viewer’s mind is thus challenged to reconstruct moments of light and shadow from these sculptural abstractions.

“Recalescence” is the sudden flare of heat in metal during cooling after it has been forged. Temple associates this with a flash of memory. When looking at all her pieces, there is this momentary flash of recognition when the viewer experiences the warmth of “real” light.

* From Richard Klein’s essay in Mary Temple’s Aldrich Museum brochure.

Mary Temple has been a featured artist in over twenty group and solo exhibitions in the past three years alone. Venues include The Sculpture Center, LIC (through April 3, 2006), The Aldrich Museum, CT (through August 6, 2006), the Albany Museum, NY (through April 9, 2006), Mixed Greens, NYC (2003, 2004), the Berkshire Museum, MA (2004), Smack Mellon, NY (2003), Cherrydelosreyes gallery, CA (2003), and Feigen Contemporary, NYC (2003). For five years, Mary has been an honored member of the Skowhegan Alliance.

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