C TO SEE
Island Lectern (detail), 2016, wood, paint, yellow ochre, overall installation dimensions variable, dimensions of this portion of the Island Lectern are 46” x 39” x 1 & 1/2”. Image courtesy of the artist
Ellen Babcock C TO SEE
Jul 1 – Sep 11 // Muñoz Waxman Gallery
The power of words, voice, and place are at the center of Albuquerque-based artist Ellen Babcock’s installation from C to See. Three sculptural ‘Lecterns’, or a place from which one voices the written word, are situated in the Muñoz Waxman Gallery. The Lecterns are ‘complete’ when utilized by a gallery visitor to read aloud from a selected text. Each lectern and corresponding text creates an individual mood ranging from protected, curious, and demanding for presentation. One Lectern is tall and narrow, offering an unusual vantage point of the gallery; another is private and nestled away like a personal alcove. The third lectern is comprised of broad, shallow, and colorful oblong shapes that create an ‘archipelago’ on the gallery floor.
A selection of readings from authors such as Jeanette Winterson, Emily Dickinson, and Robert Smithson accompany each of the lecterns and provide a voice to the sculptures. Babcock invites literature into her work as homage to these texts in relation to our own embodied perspective and sense of place.
About the artist
Ellen Babcock draws inspiration from landscapes and from the panoply of materials, often scavenged or re-used, for her sculptures and installations. She has exhibited at numerous New Mexico and California venues, including SCA Contemporary Arts in Albuquerque, and in San Francisco Arts at the Arts Commission Gallery, Southern Exposure, Headlands Center for the Arts, and Exploratorium. Babcock assisted many internationally renowned artists as a technician and materials researcher with the Art Foundry in Santa Fe, New Mexico from 1985-1999. She moved to San Francisco in 2000 to pursue an MFA at the California College of the Arts, and completed artist residencies at Recology and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Babock was awarded the Cadogan Fellowship from the San Francisco Foundation and was an affiliate artist at Headlands Center for the Arts 2002-2004 where she received an Arts Studio award. In 2009, she became Assistant Professor of Sculpture at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, and founded Friends of the Orphan Signs (FOS), an organization that sites collaboratively produced public art of abandoned signage. http://www.ellenbabcock.com/