remembrances, recollections & retrospect
The Delaware Contemporary | Wilmington, DE
January 22 - May 30, 2022
The feeling of nostalgia is universal; an innate human quality that employs our senses to recall comfort, love, or pain, but always invariably the past. Nostalgia distills memories within the impact of a moment in time, an often indescribable experience that is wholly personal and uniquely individual. To capture the feeling of nostalgia is almost impossible — it can be fleeting, striking us through various senses while we are left grasping at the threads of the memory. Although reminiscences are imperceptible at times, memories can be intentionally collected, and in doing so, act as our entrance into a nostalgic experience. Tracking and tracing memories enables us to reconnect with our own past, but also transfers these histories on to be further gathered and cherished by others.
This group exhibition examines the complexities and nuances of memory and time through artistic perspective. Some artists create based on personal histories, such as the scented textiles that are influenced by Pallavi Padukone’s home in India, and Kate VanVliet’s sculptural markers of time passing. Others aim to collapse the larger barriers of time and space to emphasize the histories of others, such as Daisy Patton’s large-scale embellished family portraits, the embroidered postcard collections of Han Cao, and Carole Loeffler’s accrued assortments of personal items. Some artists utilize elements of certain collective memories such as Mark Tennant’s sharply contrasted oil paintings that mirror camera snapshots, Rosa Leff’s etched paper cutouts of familiar locations, and Linda Dubin Garfield’s collaged “landscapes of the mind”.
Regardless of medium and practice, the selected works work in tandem to illustrate the many ways in which the mind catalogues and accesses memories through the senses. In doing so, it additionally makes us question the validity of nostalgia; how hindsight offers a small glimpse into forgotten realities, that sentimentality and emotions are inherently intertwined, and ultimately that nostalgia connects us as humans, deeming us otherwise the same despite time and space.