David Kaye Gallery » Susan Warner Keene

Foliate: new work in handmade paper
March 1 - 25, 2012

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My work in handmade paper concentrates on the membrane of the page as an expressive form in its own right, not simply as a support. To me, a sheet of paper represents a unique conjunction of the human capacities for making and for communicating. The objects I make are the result of thinking through the implications of this dialogue between material and experience.

Today, printed text is offered to us in many forms, increasingly electronic, and this is generally efficient, timely and cheap. I am intrigued, however, by the paradoxical “charge” possessed by the sheet of paper, even empty of text. It is, after all, a format in which we have registered thoughts and histories for hundreds of years, a rectangle of plant fibres that we sense with our bodies and whose imaginative space invites our entry. A sheet of paper can challenge us to be fully present.

My thanks to the Canada Council for the Arts for assistance with a project in 2010 that contributed to the works in this exhibition.

GALLERY

Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #1, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 29 X 23.75 X 2 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #2, 2012, handmade paper (abaca  fibre, cotton rag), framed size 28.5 X 23.5 X 2.5 in., SOLD.Leaf #3, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 28.5 X 23.5 X 2.5 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #4, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 28.5 X 23.5 X 2.5 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #5, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 24 X 18.5 X 1 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #6, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 23.5 X 18 X 1.5 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #7, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 22.5 x 18.5 x 1.25 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #8, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 23 X 18.5 X 1 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #9, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 21.5 X 17.5 X.1.5 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #10, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 22 X 18 X 1 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #11, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 23.5 X 18.5 X .5 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #12, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 22.5 X 17 X 1.25 in.Susan Warner Keene, Leaf #13, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 22.75 X 17.5 X 1.25 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Folio #1, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 23.5 X 28 X 2.5 in.Susan Warner Keene, Folio #2, 2012, handmade paper (abaca  fibre, cotton rag), 18.25 X 23.5 X 1.5 in.Susan Warner Keene, Folio #3, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 18 X 23.5 X 1.5 in.Susan Warner Keene, Bifoliate #1, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 27.5 X 41.5 X 2 in.Susan Warner Keene, Bifoliate #2, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), framed size 30 X 45 X 2 in.Susan Warner Keene, Bifoliate #3, 2012, handmade paper (abaca fibre, cotton rag), 24 X 39 X 1 in.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Foliate: new work in handmade paper. Exhibition installation view.

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Water Line: recent paper work
February 4 - 28, 2010

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In Water Line I am using the fluid medium of papermaking to observe the power of water to form and imprint our world.

On its way to becoming an object, paper consists of a water-infused membrane sensitive to flow, stress, passages of light – much like our own bodies, like the Earth’s crust. Intervening in this state, I find there are many ways to contemplate permanence and change.

For several years my work has concentrated on the membrane of the “page” as an expressive form in its own right, not simply as a support. As a medium, papermaking attracts me because the material and the process it undergoes seem to embody a kind of lived experience not unlike our own. At the same time, paper is culturally linked to ideas, language, and communication, crucial features of our humanity.
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The Globe and Mail, February 6, 2010
VISUAL ARTS>>REVIEW Page R14

GARY MICHAEL DAULT
GALLERY GOING

SUSAN WARNER KEENE
AT THE DAVID KAYE GALLERY

$600-$2,800. Until Feb. 28; 1092 Queen St. W., Toronto,
www.davidkayegallery.com
416-532-9075

Susan Warner Keene is a virtuoso papermaker. For her exhibition, Water Line, she states that she is “using the fluid medium of papermaking to observe the power of water to form and imprint our world.” To that end, Keene skillfully shapes her membrane-like sheets of handmade paper into myriad of suggestive relief configurations which look like nets, altar pieces, views of night sky and crumpled letters and stories…
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TORONTO STAR, February 6, 2010
ENTERTAINMENT Page E2

Peter Goddard

TODAY’S THE DAY
Last-minute ideas for a Saturday in the city

AFTERNOON
Paper swoon
Opening today, Susan Warner Keene’s “Water Line” exhibition manages to be introspective and audacious at the same time. The artist and papermaker sees each of her meticulously handcrafted pages- many brilliantly colourful- as an “expressive form in its own right, not simply as a support” for words or imagery. Keene’s practice also leads to to the radical understanding that paper is in fact “a water-infused membrane, sensitive to flow, stress (and) passages of light,” she says, “much like our own bodies, or the Earth’s crust.”

GALLERY

Susan Warner Keene, Water Line #2, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 9 X 14 X .5 in. / 23 X 35.5 X 1.3 cm., (framed: 13.5 X 18 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #4, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, 19.5 X 19.5 X 1.25 in. / 50 X 50 X 3 cm., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #4 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Aqueous, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, image: 20 X 22 X 1.25 in. / 51 X 56 X 3 cm., (framed: 26.75 X 28.75 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Aqueous (detail), 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Trace #3, 2009, handmade abaca paper, abaca fibre, image: 10.25 X 8 X .5 in. / 26 X 29 X 1.3 cm., (framed: 14.5 X 12 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Trace #2, 2009, handmade abaca paper, abaca fibre, image: 8 X 10.25 X .5 in. / 29 X 26 X 1.3 cm., (framed: 11.88 X 14.5 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Trace #1, 2009, handmade abaca paper, abaca fibre, image: 8 X 10 X .25 in. / 29 X 25 X .6 cm., (framed: 12 X 14.5 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Circle, Triangle, Square (after Sengai), 2009, handmade flax paper, image: 14.5 X 31 X 1 in. / 37 X 79 X 	2.5 cm., (framed: 20 X 36 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Luna, 2009, handmade flax paper, image: 14 X 12 X 1 in. / 35.5 X 30.5 X 2.5 cm., (framed: 20 X 17 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Nets and Stars #2, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, image: 23 X 23 X 1 in. / 58 X 58 X 2.5 cm., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Nets and Stars #2 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Nets and Stars #1, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, 23 X 23 X 1.25 in. / 58 X 58 X 3 cm., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Nets and Stars #1 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Flow, 2009, handmade flax paper, image: 16 X 10.5 X .75 in. / 41 X 27 X 2 cm., (framed: 20 X 14 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Attraction #1, 2009, handmade flax paper, image 11.5 X 17 X 1 in. / 29 X 43 X 2.5 cm., (framed: 17 X 21 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Water Line #1, 2009, handmade flax paper, image: 11.5 X 16 X .75 in. / 29 X 41 X 2 cm., (framed: 17 X 21 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Water Line #1 (detail), 2009, handmade flax paperSusan Warner Keene, Cipher #1, 2009, handmade flax paper, hemp fibre, image: 17 X 12 X 3/8 in. / 43 X 30.5 X .6 cm., (framed: 20.5 X 15.25 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Cipher #2, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 17 X 12 X 3/8 in. / 43 X 30.5 X .6 cm., (framed: 20.5 X 15.25 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Cipher #3, 2009, handmade flax paper, image: 17 X 12 X 3/8 in. / 43 X 30.5 X .6 cm., (framed: 20.5 X 15.25 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Cipher #4, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 17 X 12 X 3/8 in. / 43 X 30.5 X .6 cm., (framed: 20.5 X 15.25 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Cipher #5, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 17 X 12 X 3/8 in. / 43 X 30.5 X .6 cm., (framed: 20.5 X 15.25 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #2, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, 20.5 X 19 X 1.25 in. / 52 X 48 X 3 cm.Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #2 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen threadSusan Warner Keene, Cursive #1, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, 19.5 X 21 X 1 in. / 50 X 53 X 2.5 cm.Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #1 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen threadSusan Warner Keene, Attraction #2, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 11 X 14 X 1 in. / 28 X 35.5 X 2.5 cm., (framed: 15.75 X 17 in.), SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Water Line #3, 2009, handmade flax paper, pigment, image: 14 X 9.5 X .5 in. / 35.5 X 24 X 1.3 cm., (framed: 18.75 X 14 in.)Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #3, 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread, 19 X 19.5 X 1.25 in. / 48 X 50 X 3 cm.Susan Warner Keene, Cursive #3 (detail), 2010, handmade flax paper, pigment, linen thread

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ReVisions: recent works in paper
May 3 - 27, 2007

141keene.jpgThe work in ReVisions imagines language transformed into artifact through the act of writing. Informed by aspects of calligraphy, papermaking, and the history of the book, these pieces explore the visual and material presence of written language when fused with its paper support.

Fragments of historical text have been redrawn with liquid paper pulp in cursive script in arrangements suggested by their content, which includes lines and phrases from the Japanese poet Basho, the Chinese sage Lao Tzu, the American poet Emily Dickinson, and the French writer Edmond Jabès.

Writing can be seen as a particular kind of drawing that enables us to consider the visual possibilities of imaginative language, a process by which an insight can take on some of the characteristics of an object: solidity, texture, scale, colour. Robert Bringhurst has aptly described writing as the precipitate of language. It allows us to look again at words that, when spoken, exist in personal time and to move them into historical time, creating a looping link of thought through time. In these works I was curious to see what such residue might look like. Literally drawn from the page, the net-like structures slip in and out of legibility.

The intimacy of handwritten script connects the body to the capacity for abstract thought which language manifests. It is the relic of a past when the copying of texts by hand was a means of learning and celebrating as well as disseminating valued texts. In our era, electronic transmission is altering the way we generate, consume, and value written language. It seems timely to consider other uses for a page of text than information to be consumed as rapidly as possible.

GALLERY

Susan Warner Keene, Bashō #1, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 17.13 X 17.63 in.Susan Warner Keene, Bashō #2, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 17.13 X 17.63 in.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #1, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 37.13 X 37.13 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #1, (detail), 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #2, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 37.13 X 37.13 in.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #3, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 33.13 X 32.13 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #4, 2007, framed: 33.13 X 32.13 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Rebus #5, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, framed: 27.56 X 27.06 in.Susan Warner Keene, Reminiscence, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, linen thread, framed: 21.06 X 46.63 in.Susan Warner Keene, Lesson (after E. Dickinson), 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, cotton thread, framed: 39 X 24.06 in.Susan Warner Keene, Absence, 2007, handmade abaca paper, thread, pigment, framed: 29 X 36.13 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Epilogue #1, 2007, handmade abaca paper, thread, pigment, framed: 23.56 X 38.06 in.Susan Warner Keene, Epilogue #2, 2007, handmade abaca paper, thread, pigment, framed: 37 X 37.06 in.Susan Warner Keene, Emptiness/Form, 2007, handmade flax paper, pigment, wax, framed: 25.06 X 32.13 in.Painted Book, 2007 handmade abaca paper, thread, pigment unframed: 29 X 32 X 1 in., SOLD.Susan Warner Keene, Balance, 2007, handmade abaca paper, pigment, thread, unframed: 24 X 38 X .75 in.Susan Warner Keene, Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Exhibition installation view.Susan Warner Keene, Dark Rebus #1, 2007, handmade paper (abaca fibre, pigment, threads), 18” dia., framed 24 9/16 X 24 in.Susan Warner Keene, Dark Rebus #2, 2007, handmade paper (abaca fibre, pigment, threads), 18” dia., framed 24 9/16 X 24 in.