Screen print exhibit challenges viewers to look beyond the norm
Published: Thursday, February 23, 2012
Updated: Friday, February 24, 2012 14:02
"Why does this grab your attention? Why does this tree look different? Are they all the same, or is it tricking your eye?" asked Graham Cole, a visitor to the opening of the Daryl Bunn gallery at Kent Campus Feb. 7. Words like "minimal," "hard to grasp," and "modern" were all overheard among the murmurs of those viewing Bunn's 18 serigraphs, or screen prints.
Bunn's website has examples of his typical photographs, mostly of soft, flowing things: flowers, fire, dancers. His serigraphs, however, present a noticeable departure from the norm. The prints are simple, oriental-themed and deliberate.
Bunn's serigraphs are made by taking opaque Indian ink, making individual screens, and layering the paint through the stencils onto photo paper, one screen at a time. He never goes over it twice or touches up. "You kinda have to think way ahead," he said of the method. "You just don't know [how it will turn out]." Bunn has mastered the technique; the mysterious simplicity of making the serigraph translates to a beautiful and elegant finished product.
None of the prints are titled, and there is a reason for that. Cole, who is becoming a regular at gallery events, said that one reminded him of "a 70's bowling alley." If there had been a title, would his mind have been constrained by that boundary? Bunn thinks so."Serigraphs are very personal and by titling them, I'd be giving more away. [It's] so that you can participate." He wants the viewer to come to his own conclusions about what the serigraph represents. A quick look at these works is not going to register a response. The patron who called them "hard to grasp" was probably not looking hard enough. The longer the viewer looks, the more he will recognize, and possibly feel.
Of this series, Bunn said, "My hope is that they are appreciated for the use of color and shape, composition and balance. I would consider them successful if the viewer can create their own relationship with the work." The show will run until February 28 on Kent campus, room E-112. Those who are looking for more challenging art encouraged to attend.