The Garden Party



“In case I need you again someday” by Casey Whittier

Visiting Assistant Professor Casey Whittier, alongside local artists Rain Harris and Kyle Triplett, are in The Garden Party at the Belger Arts Center. The Belger describes the show as exploring “the fine line between the need to preserve and the need to re-imagine, re-configure, and re-contextualize the world around us. Tapping into the rich visual and symbolic history of the garden as muse, the selected artists question artificiality, preciousness, and romantic notions of the sublime.”

For this show, Casey made a swing set complete with a ceramic chain. The delicate process of making a chain out of clay is something that Casey is also working on applying to another piece, where she is constructing a flexible fishing net out of terra cotta. The fragility of these pieces, in process and in their final state, is essential to Casey’s work. In her statement, Casey says “I remember vividly the first time I stomped through a perfectly formed sheet of ice, obliterating its crystalline structure. Sadness and exaltation bubbled within me simultaneously as I stood, ankle deep, in freezing water and watched the thin remnants disappear below. I had crossed a line, a mobile and intangible line.”

Garden Party will be on view at the Belger Arts Center through May 21. Casey will also be featured in an upcoming exhibition at the Epsten Gallery titled Continuous Exchange with Nathan Craven and Margaret Kinkeade, opening February 28.