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Series 41 inspired by daily life

Megan Sebestyen
Staff Writer

Starting with a blank canvas is no easy task for an artist.

So artists draw inspiration for their work from travel, nature, literature and film. But artist Ginny Bishton, whose work is currently featured at Pomona College Museum of Art in Project Series 41, has created an exhibit inspired by none other than her daily life.

“I’ve been a big fan of Ginny’s for a long, long time and I’ve been following her work,” Rebecca McGrew, Pomona College Museum of Art curator, said.

McGrew is responsible for selecting Bishton’s work to be part of the Project Series.

Bishton has created photo collages and pen and ink drawings based on her daily life and routine: cooking, gardening, hiking, and reading. But the art is thoughtful; she uses the inspiration of her life to explore concepts like conceptualism and minimalism.

Project Series 41 is part of a series, which has been a changing exhibit at the museum since 1999, featuring unique work by a new artist every few months.

“I think its something that the community really enjoys because it gives the audience a chance to see things that are a little bit more experimental or different,” Jessica Wimbly, Pomona College Museum of Art coordinator, said.

As for Bishton’s work, this exhibition highlights a direct correlation between the object and the artist’s attentive labor.

“It’s the idea of the work that actually goes into the piece that you might not see, but is suggested, that captivates people,” Wimbly said.

A photo collage composed of vivid color photographs of fruit and vegetable soups show Bishton’s attention to detail. Bishton grew some of the fruits and vegetables, and then made homemade soups for the photographs.

“People seem to really love the exhibition,” McGrew said. “People are in awe of the art and how beautiful it is, but also of the process.”

Bishton’s patience and attention is also showcased in the minimalist, grid-based pen and ink drawings characterized by the accumulation of tens of thousands of marks.

“One of the things about Ginny’s work is when you come up to it close you see that she made a lot of marks and lines on her drawings. She’s actually using multiple colors to get that purple blackish color you see for the ink. That’s layers and layers of marks,” Wimbly said.

Rebecca Vizcarra, a museum employee, says that many of the visitors return for a second visit, needing more time to look at the work.

“With her work you see every intricate detail. There’s so much meaning behind every line,” Vizcarra said.

Though the art speaks for itself, a catalogue accompanies the exhibition with an essay by critic and critical art writer Sonia Campagnolia.

“Every piece in the exhibit people are really studying,” Vizcarra, said. “I’ve had people spend an hour in there.”

The Project Series is supported by the Pasadena Art Alliance.

“The purpose is to bring to the community new forms and techniques of art,” Wimbly said.

Bishton’s exhibition will be on view through Sunday.

The Pomona College Museum of Art is located at 330 N. College Ave., Claremont.

Admission is free and the Museum is open Tuesday through Friday, from noon to 5 p.m.; Thursday, from noon to 11 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m.

For more information, call 909-621-8283 or visit pomona.edu/museum.

Megan Sebestyen can be reached at megan.sebestyen@laverne.edu.

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