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Karrie Hovey

Karrie Hovey: groundcover



Friday, May 18, 5-9pm

Saturday, May 19, 1-5pm

Art studio/gallery: 503 Tunnel Ave.


During her residency at Recology, Karrie Hovey has made work that addresses the compulsion of humans to alter or manipulate the landscape, while also exploring her own interest in multiples and variations within multiple forms. From the deliberate clearcutting of forests and building of sprawling residential developments to the inadvertent melting of the polar icecap and creation of oceans of plastic resulting from our lifestyles and consumption practices, Hovey’s work alludes to this human urge to modify and meddle and its profound long-term impact on our natural environment.


Working with the term groundcover, she has created art pieces that do indeed cover the ground—in this case the floor of the studio—and which suggest landscapes viewed from the air. Hovey has used the glass kiln in the art studio to melt a variety of scavenged, broken glass and has produced forms in glistening, arctic-like colors which have the appearance of melting ice. Like glass, another material in abundance at the facility is latex paint, and Hovey has poured it on flat surfaces, then once it has dried, has peeled it up and sliced it up into shapes and strips. She has woven the resulting new material creating grid-like forms that appear like pixels from our Google-mapped, manipulated landscapes. Working with discarded books, she has constructed a field of repeating chrysanthemum forms, and like the flowers which are sometimes associated with grief, this work can be seen as morning the loss of physical books while also suggesting the forests of trees used in their creation.


Says Hovey, “as a research-based, site-specific installation artist, I am interested in how a manufactured or created space can destabilize our customary expectations of and interactions with our environment. My investigations have led me to explore the symbiotic relationship between the human landscape and the natural environment. I am intrigued by the impact of global trade, patterns of consumer culture, and the aftermath of our consumption.” Hovey received her MFA at San Francisco State University and has complete residencies in locations around the world, including China, Spain, the Netherlands, and France.


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Taken on March 30, 2011