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Tanja Softi¿ (American, born former Yugoslavia 1966), Angel of Becoming, 2009, acrylic, pigment, charcoal, and chalk on handmade paper mounted on board, 60 x 60 inches, 2009 © Tanja Softi¿, photograph by Travis Fullerton. Lent courtesy of Reynolds Gallery, Richmond, Virginia
Exhibition
Aug 20, 2014
throughOct 06, 2014

Tanja Softic: Migrant Universe

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On view August 20 through October 6, 2014, in the Harnett Museum of Art, is the exhibition Tanja Softić: Migrant Universe. Softić’s prints, drawings, and paintings combine images of natural and man-made structures with drawings based on appropriated visual material: medical and botanical illustrations, maps and charts, manuscript illuminations, and comic art. Her work addresses concepts of cultural hybridity, chaos, and memory. Her series, Migrant Universe, created from 2007 to 2011, consists of ten large mixed media works and is a “visual poem” about identity and the worldview of the immigrant.

In regards to her work, Softić states, “The visual vocabulary of the Migrant Universe drawings suggests a displaced existence: fragmented memories, adaptation, revival, and transformation. Because I do not live and work within the comfort or boundaries of the culture in which I first learned to observe, interpret, and engage the world, I have the arguable privilege of having lived more than one life. My memory is my virtual self and, paradoxically, my most authentic self. Yet, memory is a process that involves erosions and accretions that occur with any reconstructive, interpretative, or artistic act. One reconnects with what has been broken, fragmented, or overlaid. Remembering becomes an act of reconstruction, where one works with what is there and tries to visualize what has been lost. Because each act of memorization necessarily involves interpretation, there can be no objective recollection.”

About the Artist

Softić is Professor of Art, Department of Art and Art History, University of Richmond. Her work is included in numerous collections in the United States and abroad, among them the New York Public Library, Library of Congress Print Department, and New South Wales Gallery of Art in Sydney, Australia. She participated in the 12th International Print Triennial in Cracow, Poland, and won a first prize at the 5th Kochi International Triennial Exhibition of Prints, Ino-cho Paper Museum, in Kochi, Japan in 2002. Recently, she completed print projects at Flying Horse Press, Tamarind Institute, and Anderson Ranch's Patton Printshop. Softić is also a recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Grant, National Endowment for the Arts/Southern Arts Federation Visual Artist Fellowship, and Soros Foundation-Open Society Institute Exhibition Support Grant.

About the Exhibition

The exhibition is organized and circulated by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, College of Charleston School of the Arts, Charleston South Carolina. At the Harnett Museum of Art, University of Richmond Museums, the exhibition is made possible in part with support from the Louis S. Booth Arts Fund.

Past Programming

Thursday, September 4, 2014, 6 to 8 p.m.
Reception, Harnett Museum of Art, Modlin Center for the Arts

Friday, September 5, 2014, 2 to 2:45 p.m.
Artist Talk, Harnett Museum of Art, Modlin Center for the Arts
Tanja Softić, artist and Professor of Art, Department of Art and Art History, University of Richmond

Tuesday, September 16, 2014, 6 to 7 p.m.
Lecture, Jepson Hall, Room 118
Catalogue of Silence: what we forget when we forget about art
Tanja Softić, artist and Professor of Art, Department of Art and Art History, University of Richmond

Tanja Softic: Migrant Universe