Circles, Squiggles, and Lines

Susan Byrnes, Crystal Gregory, Theresa Hackett, and Mark Harris

November 6, 2023 – May 11, 2024

Press Release

“Circles, Squiggles, and Lines”
Susan Byrnes, Crystal Gregory, Theresa Hackett, and Mark Harris

The Gallery at the Summit  Hotel
5345 Medpace Way, Cincinnati, OH

Nov 6, 2023 to May 11, 2024

Opening and holiday reception, Wednesday, Decembr 6
5-8 pm

The Gallery at The Summit Hotel is pleased to announce “Circles, Squiggles, and Lines,” a group exhibition featuring four regional and national artists whose artwork compliments the spirit of the holiday season.

“Circles, Squiggles, and Lines,” which is contemporaneous with Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, St. Nicholas Day, Bodhi Day, Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Saint Lucy’s Day, Christmas, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa, Zarathosht Diso, New Years Eve, and Lailat Al Miraj, celebrates the generosity of the holiday season. On view are artworks by Susan Byrnes, Crystal Gregory, Theresa Hackett, and Mark Harris, whose extreme labor complements the handiwork involved in making holiday gifts for loved ones or the labor expended to fund gift purchases. Artists’ labor, and espe-cially women’s work, has long been a theme in contemporary art, partly in response to minimal and conceptual artworks that appear comparatively effortless. 

What sets “Circles, Squiggles, and Lines” apart from prior exhibitions focused on artists’ labor is that these three motifs evoke the bows, ribbons, string, and paper disguising some desirable holiday gift. Since we sometimes receive gifts that we dismiss as ridiculous, but later come to love, some philosophers compare art appreciation to gift reception. That is, we sometimes experience artworks that strike us as unremarkable, yet we end up thinking about them so much that eventually we come to admire them. 
In fact, those are the artworks we love the most, since we had to convince ourselves of their value. Once we get past our superfi-cial experience with artworks, much like the packaging hiding our favorite gifts, we have a real treasure to behold.  
With “Circles, Squiggles, and Lines,” however, the packaging is the gift. That is, the treasure is front and center, hardly hidden. What’s less visible, however, is each artist’s arduous labor. When one focuses on the artwork, one immediately notices the actions undertaken by each artist. One finds delicate paper cuttings, layers of polyurethane rubber, minute geometric details, handwoven tex-tiles cast in concrete, all interlaced with layers of colorful materi-als. What’s more, one feels the energy expended by the artist, as if the calories burned while making the art were transferred onto the circles, squiggles and lines dazzling our eyes.