Mixed media artist Michelle Sales opens her new solo exhibition in the main gallery at the Alliance for the Arts on Friday, February 10th with a reception from 5-7:30 p.m. The Illinois-based artist began her career as a painter, expressing herself forcefully with pigment and mixed media since childhood. But today, her primary focus now is mixed media sculpture. “My work is concerned with the accumulation and preservation of memory,” she says. “I create work which retains the mnemonic threads in physical form. Casting my net, I capture personal memories as they rise to the surface.”
Sales builds her work in layers that denote the passage of time. “Archaeologists are very astute about finding various things embedded in layers as they look through them,” the artist notes. For Sales, layers symbolize how we excavate memory by going through and leaving off old layers.
The fiber artist is currently at work on a series she calls Tailings, “for the tail end of a process.” The series will include synthetic, embroidered scrolls that represent “accumulations of memories, of things that drop off, in boxes on the wall.” But while she wants viewers to see her vision, Sales is fine with them drawing their own conclusions about her message and work. “It doesn’t necessarily have to be what I think. If they get something from it that they see, that’s really my heart’s desire. That’s ultimately my hope.”
Ms. Sales has won numerous awards and recognition in both national and international exhibitions and was recently featured at The Busan International Art Exhibition in South Korea. Her exhibition will run through February 25th. Meet the artist and explore her work during a gallery walk and talk on Saturday, February 11th from 10-11:00 a.m.
Fort Myers painter Annie St. Martin will be featured in the Member Gallery and a collection of work by Charles Vavrina will be on display in the Theater Lobby during the entire run of Ms. Sales’ exhibition. For more information contact Krista Johnson, exhibition coordinator, at 239-939-2787 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Alliance for the Arts proudly supports artists and arts organizations in our area as the state designated Local Arts Agency for Lee County. The Alliance campus and galleries, which are open to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays, are located at 10091 McGregor Boulevard, just south of Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.