BELLOWS FALLS—Canal Street Art Gallery, 23 Canal St., presents “Melissa Rubin: Transitions,” which will open Wednesday, Oct. 13 and be on view to the public through Saturday, Nov. 13.
Join the gallery on Third Friday Gallery Night from 5 to 8 p.m. and live at 6 p.m. on Oct. 15 to celebrate in its Outdoor Art Tent and in the gallery. Meet the artist and watch the artist talk at 6 p.m.
Rubin creates what the artist refers to as “essential fabrics” through the process of weaving shredded encaustic monotype prints.
“As I shredded the prints I had created, I was rethinking my creative process. I was able to use the act of weaving [the shredded prints] as meditation and contemplation, [as] a way to calm my mind and transcend, although briefly, the chaos that was unfolding in the world around me,” said Rubin in her artist statement.
The show presents woven encaustic monotypes, created in 2020 and 2021.
A monotype is a one-of-a-kind print. The artist paints on a printing plate and transfers it to paper with a press. Encaustic is a technique of painting with pigmented wax, often on wood panels, with many layers separately fused or burned on.
To create an encaustic monotype, the artist uses pigmented wax, applied directly to a temperature-controlled metal plate. Paper or fabric is then laid onto the hot wax, so that the image transfers and absorbs into it.
“During the height of the pandemic, I had limited access to my studio,” said Rubin. “Faced with a limitation of materials, I had to create using whatever I had on hand. I began making encaustic monotypes using beeswax, resin, and pigments, and a variety of papers I had with me.”
“The monotypes started accumulating and the constraints of time and materials forced my work to transition to a new direction,” she continued.
“I began cutting the prints apart and weaving them together in new ways, creating what I began to see as ‘essential fabrics,’” said Rubin, a New York City– and Vermont–based artist. “Once the papers had been woven into a new piece, other colors and materials were added: various papers and collage elements, powdered pigments, oil paint or stick, silver leaf.”