Printmakers aren’t typically known for sound, video and motion installations. But artist Anne Hoff’s print-and-drawing-based exhibit, Seeking Silence, at CSN Fine Arts Gallery, is a physical show creating a multisensory experience.
Designed to reflect the calm stimuli of nature, this is an exhibit of subtle gestures—the “rhythmic mantra” of footsteps on a path, a breeze—and desert toughness rendered in repeating images, one of them monumental. A collection of sculptural earth-tone pods dangles from the ceiling, all constructed from printed fabric, paper and twigs, with strips of pages from old sketchbooks spilling out.
A large wall mural depicts a tree’s wild and tenacious root system deep in the earth, matching the tumultuous sky above and reflecting Hoff’s admiration of enduring desert plants, turned and twisted by nature and the harsh climate. Bold and delicate patterns are repeated in stone lithographs of trees and canyons. Two drawings of hiking trails in arid forests move in the breeze.
Hoff, a drawing and printmaking professor at CSN, is not much of a “framed and on the wall”-type artist, preferring instead to get the art off the wall and physically engaging viewers. Seeking Silence, she says, is more of an experiment for her. “In the past year I realized that everything I’m working on is trying to contain quiet and peace,” she says, adding that this is her way to share what she experiences when out in nature, removed from the external and internal noise of daily life.
Her limited color palette, the movement of the stark and detailed renderings—including those on sheer fabric—and the recorded sound of a hiking path create the heightened sensation Hoff aimed for, one that’s both literal and dreamy.
Seeking Silence Through June 6; Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. CSN Fine Arts Gallery, 651-4146. Artist reception May 9, 6-8 p.m.