Monday, March 30, 2015

Looking at: "Options," Multiple Visual Reflections by Pat Young

"Options" by Pat Young, shared by permission of the artist
An artist friend, Pat Young, invited me to an opening at Flow Art Space, where she had a piece in the salon part of the exhibition. I'd seen the piece as she'd been making decisions on the final layout and title and it was so nice to see the completed, "Options," at the show. Maybe I'm at an advantage because I know some of the back story, but "Options" is a piece that I can travel inside of - each window an alternate story that could unfold as the traveling figure heads toward variations on a theme. (Like one of those movies, where the protagonist gets to try out alternate futures usually to discover some best option that they hadn't even seen at the beginning and could only know from going through the whole journey. )

I was fascinated by how these images were created. The overlaid imagery looked like some darkroom or chemical alchemy. But the alchemy is positional. Pat explained how she'd noticed that an older framed photograph she'd hung in her apartment was reflecting images of her other artworks on another wall as well as catching light through the blinds at the window. By moving herself and her camera around at different times of day, and playing with what was hung across the room, she could create/discover a series of compositions with variations on all these elements. In addition, she's included a water color impression of the impressions.

Each element has a metaphorical quality to me, especially as they are placed in relationship to each other, suggesting a narrative to be discovered. And each element has personal meaning to Pat, I learned: prior directions in her art that represent certain periods and themes, and also suggesting possible current "options" to pursue. I feel like she's created a menu of portals to enter. Maybe you could call it a time-machine-kaleidescope in reverse - taking all these pieces and fusing them, through the composition/creation process into a collection of views from the present into possible futures. This moment between past and future, poised on the verge of the next path, is a wonderful place to pause and ponder the views.


  1. Another great post, Jonee, and I like the bolded text to highlight themes/sections of interest - keep the posts coming!