Recollection … yellow (1)

February 13, 2011
Reproduced courtesy of the artist and the Elizabeth Harris Gallery, a private collection in New York.

The dynamic of Elisa D'Arrigo's work seems simple: yellow squares sewn together, with the thread bringing out a sculptural dimension. But a specific memory underlies each piece. Writes D'Arrigo: "These memories are of images I once observed, and then held in mind . . . sometimes for decades, and are the subtext of the work." Sometimes the memory is directly related to a piece of fabric of her past, or the past of friends in her community. A narrative is developed through abstraction. There's something appropriate about meeting D'Arrigo's sculpture during Ordinary Time, for this is a season for building a calendar of squares. In these weeks we understand that formation comes as small threads pull and bind and connect and shape us. This in turn causes planes to pop out or angle in, looking as though they were in a constant dynamic of subtle changes of light. In a season that is about formation and process, D'Arrigo's work extends the spiritual plane through the physical.

—Lil Copan