Artist: Caryn Aasness
Exhibition: Bonham, Jones, Page
Media: Yarn , Paper with text
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dr Maxine Merlino Gallery
About the Artist
Caryn Aasness is an undergraduate student that is in the Fiber BFA. Her work current work is reflective of her gender study classes. The weaving work she did took about 20 hours for each piece. She hopes to get a job in textile and wallpaper work after graduating from Long Beach. She likes to use text in her work.
The artist uses yarn to create weavings that had 26 columns and a differing number of rows. In each row there is only one cross section that stands out. From a distance there is no visible mistake that sticks out but I did not inspect the piece entirely enough to guarantee that. The colors used vary per column and are normal colors that do not reoccur. At the end of the columns there are the loose ends of the yarn turned into tassels. Next to the weaving is a table of lettering that is read from top to bottom and is corresponding to the irregular cross sections on the weaving.
At first I didn’t understand the purpose of the work in the exhibit and thought of it as only for aesthetics. After a few minutes of looking at the paper with the table alongside the piece, I figured out the corresponding markings were coming out on the piece as well. I was also able to decipher the message to be “In the days of my youth I was told what it means to be a man.” The artist’s exhibit was meant to bring up social issues and this can be seen as an issue for those that feel that society is forcing them into something they are not.
Synthesis / My Experience
I found the work to be ingenious in the way that it delivered its message. I would not have figured it out without the sheet and would’ve ignored it all if it was not for the big message in the entrance. The message essentially stated that if you only thought of the work as a visual piece then you were missing something. The message in the piece I chose is true for and is not an issue for me but I understand it can be an issue for others. For those guys that feel they don’t fit the category of what a man should be, it may connect with more than it did with me.