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Marks and Monsters - Zach Mory

ArtSlant Prize Exhibitions presents Zach Mory, Marks and Monsters. Mory comes from the small town of Cottage Grove, WI, a few miles southeast of Madison, WI. Initially trained as a life drawer, his work slowly turned towards the abstract and non-objective possibilities of art making as his undergraduate schooling continued at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In the spring of 2008, he received his MFA from UW-Madison with a concentration in drawing.

Wanting to push his training further, he enrolled in the College of DuPage’s graphic Design program in 2010. He finished his degree there in 2013, winning Best Portfolio and Best Illustration. Zach has taught various courses throughout Wisconsin and Illinois including UW-Madison, Carthage College, Lawrence University, Ripon College and most recently at Waubonsee Community College and most recently at the College of DuPage in their graphic design program.

Artist Statement:
This body of work is an attempt to find singularity and uniqueness within rigid frameworks. I am curious about how past decisions affect future outcomes. Using repetitive marks made of graphite on paper, I create systems for those marks to function within and let each layer build upon the previous one. One mark leads to the next and so on until what I'm left with is an accumulated residue of the hours spent within each particular system. I try to strip down the drawing until all that is left are the most basic of elements: graphite marks on the page and the time spent creating those marks. I unload the page of its pictorial meaning and emotive qualities leaving only the pre-ordained outcome of a particular system.

Yet somewhere, at some point within the hours and hours spent building each drawing, my analytical and detached formula gives way to something otherworldly. Something emotive occurs and each drawing becomes its own “thing” packed with its own meaning and narrative. I don’t know why this happens; only that it does.

I like to think that I am a minimalist at heart. I love restrictions and I love the simplicity of building artworks using only the most crucial elements. That being said, I must confess that I’ve had a change of heart about minimalists in general. They are not stodgy formalists and puritans who are trying to steal away the joy of looking, but rather are romantics who speak in hushed tones, using clarity and quiet sounds as their language of choice.

For more information visit: Zach Mory


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