Friday, January 25, 2013

Alyson Pou: Wherein Fury Takes Flight… the time of our silence is over

I saw Alyson Pou's installation at Aljira a few months ago. I was there to see another show and her install caught my eye. Wonderfully crafted women's dresses on poles whirring around within a dream-like room with animated stuffed rabbits lurking around. Dreams, twilight, bewitching hour, ghosts and spirits are stirred up by this installation. The sounds, shadows, and wonderful light are captivating. I love this work. The show is up until March and it well worth the visit.

Here is Alyson's recent newsletter with upcoming events:

My installation Wherein Fury Takes Flight… the time of our silence is over remains on view at Aljira a Center for Contemporary Art in Newark, NJ through March 30th 2013. Read more about the project and see recent press here...


I have organized two very special events for February and March, in conjunction with my show, to bring together a wide range of artist’s to share our work and explore the use of storytelling, autobiography, matrilineal heritage and women’s decorative arts and crafts as part of the artistic process.

All events are FREE and open to the public.

crochet laceSaturday February 9, 2013   1-4pm

Concept and Craft - Hand Made in the 21st Century

Moderated by: Alyson Pou
Special Guest: Judith Brodsky, Institute for Women and Art Rutgers University

Presenters: Melissa Potter, Lacey Jane Roberts, Andrew Salamone, Nathan Vincent, Bisa Washington, Noelle Williams

In the 1960s and 70s in the wake of the Women’s Liberation Movement, feminist artists sought to resurrect women’s craft and decorative arts as a viable artistic means to express female experience, thereby pointing to its political and subversive potential.  Since then artists of all gender identities have embraced the use of domestic craft in their work. How has the meaning and politics of using these crafts changed in the last 30 years? How has globalization through new technologies and the internet affected the use of domestic crafts? How is a new generation of artists making use of these age-old crafts?

I hope you can join me, Judith Brodsky, and this panel of six dynamic artists to be part of a lively presentation and discussion about Concept and Craft in the 21st Century!

All best,

Narrative ThreadsPreview: COMING UP in MARCH
Two-Part Women's History Month Event

March 2, 2013 1-6pm
Narrative Threads: Tapping the Motherline 

This two-part women’s history month event will feature visual artists and writer/performers who use the oral tradition of storytelling, and tap into matrilineal and cultural roots for their inspiration. Artists include: Janet Henry, Daniel Alexander Jones, Ivivia Olenick, Alyson Pou and Christina Springer. 


Artist’s statement:

Wherein Fury Takes Flight…the time of our silence is over.

Years ago I had a vivid dream of a large room filled with black dresses twirling, hovering, flying, and colliding.  I was outside looking in, then standing in the midst of the storm of dresses.  The next morning I got news of my grandmother’s death.   After her funeral, I continued to have thoughts and dreams of this room full of black dresses silently twirling, dancing, and hovering around the ceiling like ghosts.  It became the inspirations for a performance/installation titled “To Us At Twilight…”

Now, more than 20 years later I revisit that room. I feel the presence of all the women in my family who have since died and the presence of many more women stretching back into the deepest past.  This time they are whipping up a mighty wind making a decision to move, to leave behind the desires, secrets, hardships of the past.

Wherein Fury takes Flight… consists of seven dresses constructed from thrift store finds that I have taken apart, sometimes dyed or embellished and then reassembled.  The resulting garments are contemporary but at the same time evoke another era. 

“The rabbits symbolize transition and transformation. They come out at dawn and dusk, the witching hour, the most vulnerable time of day, when things slip from life to death, from evil to good. They’re gathering to bear witness, and support the movement from stasis to change.

“They also represent the underlying secret world in my family that I learned about as a child and visited through observing the women around me.  In unspoken ways they instructed me and gave me glimpses into the depth of their experiences.  Through them my imagination was drawn to the past and a desire to understand the women who came before me.

“In my work I seek to create a place open to curiosity and wonderment, a place for viewers to enter and conjure their own memories and stories, and perhaps visit their own secret world.”

Alyson Pou

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