ERIN WIERSMA
CURRENT AWARDS & EXHIBITIONS:


Awarded Big-12 Faculty Fellowship for 2013-14 Academic Year
News Release

Visual Inquiry: 2013 Kansas State University Art Faculty Exhibition
Beach Art Museum, Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS, November 15, 2013 - February 2, 2014

A FINE LINE: Contemporary Drawing
Claypool-Young Art Gallery, Morehead State University, Morehead, KY
October 16 - November 29, 2013

Studio Visit Magazine, v.23-24, Winter Edition, 2014, selected by Barbara O'Brien, Executive Director, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO, Open Studios Press, Boston, MA

Solo Exhibition, Rebecca Randall Bryan Art Gallery, Coastal Carolina University, Conway, SC July 8 to August 23, 2013
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Momentary Traces
Essay by Thomas Bell, Kansas State University, 2012.

Erin Wiersma’s work explores and challenges our notions and everyday experience of time/space, the heady place where time slows down, becomes elastic, or stops altogether. It explores motion and gesture to create its own wordless language and geography. The motifs in her paintings, the character and heart of them emerge, even to her, over time. It is as though she works in some place below consciousness, where the intuitive reveals the scheme in its own time. Her finished works, then are not unlike a musical score in an oblique notation where each mark, gesture, drip, drag, smudge, and the spaces in between represent the rhythms, motion, thoughts, sound, tonal color and silence that formed and inform each work.

This non-linear approach is embodied in her desire to reach past ordinary time and get to the spiritual, a state outside of time, where the present, past, and future all lie on the same continuum and the present transcends conventional notions of chronos. Her time-based works draw the viewer into their “free of time” world and their wordless language invite the viewer to let go of time and all things linear to enter their contemplative stillness and stand in an eternal present, untethered from the constructs of time, bodies, schedules, life’s almost constant distractions.

The importance of Erin Wierma’s paintings, like the best non-representational works, lies in their intricate use of space and emotive idiom. In order to enter the world of these works, the viewer, whether a seasoned curator or newcomer to the style, must yield to their “outside-of-time” universe. There is also something of the minimal in her works. They are almost entirely black and white and grey, with only very rare appearances of any other colors. In some sense, they could be conceived as an obscure calligraphy, but instead of characters, they record a history, in and of each piece, in a language of calculated, then improvised longing. A longing to know, to translate unutterable experience, to inhabit sublime, intuitive, contemplative, intimate silence. Her works invite one into an experience that, while not empirical, is as real as gravity. Those rare moments where time stops for us. Those moments that are so important, so crucial that we are, finally, entirely present and it doesn’t matter what else may be going on. Those moments when we suspect there is something more going on in life than we normally have time to even consider.