An art show at the Eugene Downtown Library highlights humanity, biology, COVID-19, female activists and the American flag.
On the second floor of the library, in the room for magazines and newspapers, there are four art installations by the artist, writer and fifth generation of Oregon Julie Anderson Bailey. Each work is strategically located above waist level, so it is impossible to miss them when you enter a room full of desks and shelves. When you enter the main entrance, turn left, take a deep breath and let the journey begin.
Biology Rising is an installation, over four windows, of nearly 900 light green circles, made up of old sewing paper, wire, gel pad and Oregon beeswax. Hanging from thin threads, numerous translucent circles create something that looks like huge floating clouds. The intriguing part is that each circle contains a certain interior design.
Take a closer look and you will find models inspired by volvox, a genus of freshwater algae. Anderson Bailey devoted nearly 640 hours to working on the circles, as it helped her cope with her grief and look for something every day after losing her mother last December. “It gives your hands something to do and it gives your heart something to do,” she says.
Located on the walls between the windows is Hues of Life, a series of nine wooden panel displays with circular prints that pay homage to micrology and humanity. After all, they are part of the first collection. The difference: They provide macro views in different tones and shades. Just a few steps away is the Art of COVID, which includes five mixed media paintings in black frames, made on paper and using acrylic paint. Now look carefully at the shapes, colors, tones and lines. Cubism, an artistic style created in part by Pablo Picasso, seems to have influenced this collection.
Take the opportunity to take an internal journey and decipher the meaning of a project that began with the onset of the pandemic and its aftermath. The artist tells us: “This tells the story of COVID, the world and the pandemic. And this story about – we have to work together, politics and division. “
These thoughts led Anderson Bailey to wonder what people thought of the American flag, and the State of Hope was born. The collection includes seven collages in a frame with mixed media and canvas, located on the wall opposite the window. You can find images of American activists, the American flag and quoted opinions about it from friends, family members, volunteers and social media users.
Did you find the white and orange butterflies in one of the pieces? Did you recognize any of the faces depicted in the collection? Did you read all the quotes? This collection has many dimensions and approaches; this is the beauty of art.
Your last stop: Find the two glass windows on the side of the main entrance. In them you will find the artist’s biography, detailed descriptions and documentation about her exhibition, as well as tools and references used in her work. But there is more to it than can be seen. What is art if not the ability to interpret it as you wish and perhaps connect with it?
There are several ways to explain the connection between art and the artist. “That’s the way we handle the world, isn’t it?” That’s the way we understand things, “says Anderson Bailey. For her, this exhibition has a personal and social meaning. What is on display on the second floor of the Eugene Library is the work of an artist who has dedicated almost his entire life to many artistic expressions, including art, painting, drama and music.
Julie Anderson Bailey’s art exhibition runs until July 24 at Eugene Public Library, 100 West 10th Avenue. The Biology Rising showcase will be on display at the library until the end of August as part of the Mayor’s Art Show. Find out more about the artist at JulieJulie.co. Free.