Granary Arts is pleased to present new exhibitions
The New Beehive
The New Beehive is a contemporary approach to The Grand Beehive, a 1980 exhibition that explored representations of the beehive symbol in various aspects of Utah culture. The New Beehive exhibition, presented by the Utah Division of Arts & Museums, is a collaboration between the Folk Arts and Visual Arts programs–it brings together the work of 30 Utah-based artists who exemplify the diversity of artistic expression in visual media and craft found statewide. The artists were invited to create a unique artwork employing the beehive and associated imagery as a concept, motif, or metaphor. The resulting pieces are a collection of deeply personal interpretations of what it means to be a resident of the Beehive State in the 21st century.
Linda Bergstrom, Virginia Catherall, Michelle Franzoni Thorley, Daniel George, Lily & Michael Havey, Jann Haworth, Kate Ithurralde, Tzvi Izaksonas, Abraham Kimball, Lenka Konopasek, Jamie Kyle, Adam Larsen, Sarah May, Sarah Morton, Alison Neville, Mercedes Ng, Lola Reyes, Humberto Sanchez Conejo, Heidi Somsen, Julie Strong, Danielle Susi, John Tavoian, Douglas Tolman, Kalani Tonga, Jeremiah Tuchyner, Justin Wheatley, Laura Sharp Wilson, Rebecca Woolston, Ashton Young, and MönSr Yusef.
In the spring of 2020, Katie Hargrave and Meredith Laura Lynn visited every national park in Utah and created a body of work exploring how these sites have been mediated by infrastructure. Roads, parking lots, scenic overlooks, and bathrooms make the parks accessible to hundreds of thousands of visitors each year, but they also direct and manage the relationships those park goers have with the landscape. As nature writer Edward Abbey put it in Desert Solitaire, “You can’t see anything from a car.” There is a value judgement implicit in this statement. Abbey and others equate a certain connection to nature with spirituality, purity, and a unique kind of enlightenment, but that sort of experience in the outdoors deliberately excludes most park visitors. Using a state with a wide variety of public lands as a springboard, Hargrave and Lynn explore all five Utah National Parks and consider the complexities of a relationship to landscape that is heavily mediated by vehicles, cameras, and our own nostalgia.
The artists acknowledge the land where this work was made, as the care of these places has happened from time immemorial by the Ute, Southern Paiute, and Puebloan peoples. While these sites are under the control of the National Parks system, it is indigenous peoples who continue to put necessary pressure on the US government to preserve these spaces.
About the Artists
Katie Hargrave and Meredith Laura Lynn are artists and educators who work collaboratively to explore the historic, cultural, and environmental impacts of public land. Their work has been shown at Atlanta Contemporary (Atlanta, GA), the Wiregrass Museum of Art (Dothan, AL), Austin Peay State University (Clarksville, TN), House Guest Gallery (Louisville, KY), and has been published by Walls Divide Press (Memphis, TN). Together they have been artists in residence at Signal Fire (Portland, OR). Hargrave is based in Chattanooga, TN and recent exhibitions include The Front (New Orleans, LA), Neon Heater (Finley, OH) and Alabama Contemporary Art Center (Mobile, AL). She has been an artist in residence at Epicenter (Green River, UT), Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts (Rabun Gap, GA), and the Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT). Lynn is based in Tallahassee, FL. Her solo work has recently been shown at the Morris Graves Museum of Art (Eureka, CA), Miami University of Ohio (Oxford, OH), and the Alexander Brest Gallery (Jacksonville, FL). She has been artist in residence at the Jentel Foundation (Sheridan, WY), the Kimmel Harding Nelson (Nebraska City, NE), and the Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT). Hargrave and Lynn met at the University of Iowa, where they both earned MFAs. www.meredithlauralynn.com www.katiehargrave.com
Our Valley Speaks: A Sanpete Experience / Curated by David Lindsay (Virtual)
If the earth beneath your feet could speak, what might it tell you? What would you ask of its memories and thousands of lifetimes? The exhibition Our Valley Speaks: A Sanpete Experience amplifies the myriad voices of the valley, connecting audiences to the sacred and the historic, the past and future heartbeat of this magnificent landscape.
Artists from Utah and beyond share stories of local sites that contain magic and meaning. Historians speak of the influential people and places that have shaped the lore and culture of Sanpete Valley. Personal recollections and family chronicles illustrate the profound connection to the land felt by the region’s people. And the rocks, birds and plants of Utah’s bounty also play their part in enriching and joining the exhibition to the endless skies and vistas.
Visitors can download the Popwalk app to their smartphones, which guides them to the locations where these tales are told in situ. The entire valley becomes a natural amphitheater–a connective, living museum without walls or limits. Twenty-first century technology and the ancient terrain is brought together, becoming a portal to understanding and appreciation for the power of the landscape and those who have left its legacies to us. In a sense, participants not only learn about what and who went before them, they leave something of themselves and their adventures in Sanpete Valley for later generations of travelers.
About the Curator
David Lindsay was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and received his MFA from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Lindsay’s work has been exhibited extensively and internationally, including at Arte Laguna, Arsenale, Venice; Georges Enescu Museum, Romania; Contemporary Art Fair, New York City; Monchskirche Gallery, Salzwedel, Germany; and Alphonse Berber Gallery in Berkeley. He was Associate Director of the School of Art at Texas Tech University 2017-19 and is currently the director of Sites Set for Knowledge–a nonprofit arts organization that oversees Popwalk, a phone app for viewing site specific digital works of art.
The Family Trade / Bird’s Eye Chisel Album
Bird’s Eye Chisel is a collection of original songs written by Ashley Hanson and Brian Laidlaw during their year-long Granary Artist Fellowship in the Sanpete Valley. It is a “folk” album in its musical aesthetic – acoustic instruments, simple harmonies, lyrical storytelling – but it’s also a “folk” album in the process of its construction.
During their time in Sanpete, Ashley and Brian met with local community members, scholars, musicians, parents, students, and artists to amass a shared library of images and insights about the area’s beautiful, complex history. In story circles, interviews and songwriting workshops, Ashley and Brian listened to the joys and anxieties of modern-day life in the area, heard celebrations and interrogations of Sanpete’s past, and documented all manner of hopes, dreams and fears for the future of the valley.
From this patchwork of quotations and observations, patterns started to emerge, touchstones would echo and rhyme and reverberate, through-lines would thread their way from one conversation to the next. The sheep, the rabbit-brush, the old houses, the new houses, the old timers, the newcomers, the soil, the chisel and the stone. Those recurring images, which arise in fine variation across many voices, and which accrete new meanings through many generations, are the very substance of folk music itself: the collective vocabulary through which people – folk – articulate their sense of place.
So the songs of Bird’s Eye Chisel are patchworks, collages, assembled and recorded in the pioneer cabin on Granary’s grounds. They try to do what good folksongs do: evoke a landscape, tell a story, offer a commentary. And although the compositions now exist on the record in fixed form, the artists consider these songs – and, indeed, all folksongs – to be living documents, reborn different at every performance, shifting forever to match shifting conditions, and belonging absolutely to anyone who chooses to sing them. www.brianlaidlaw.com/thefamilytrade.
Granary Arts is supported in part by Utah Division of Arts & Museums, with funding from the State of Utah and the National Endowment for the Arts, The Sam and Diane Stewart Family Foundation, George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area, Sanpete County Travel, Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, and generous support from Ephraim City.