April 2020

Red Thread

Emma Brown

Virtual Opening • April 4, 2020
Virtual Artist Workshop & Closing Reception • May 16, 2020

Artist Bio

Emma Brown is an artist from a nice cornfield in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. Inspired by her mother’s love of art history and her father, an avid amateur photographer (and budding wine-and-paint artist in retirement), she loves looking at and making images of all kinds. She graduated in 2017 from Kenyon College of Gambier, Ohio, and now works for the Columbus Museum of Art. 

Artist Statement

Hey, do you like to read all the text on the wall at galleries? Or do you like to go straight for the artwork and go from there? Both are fine. But if you’re curious, this is the part where I tell you more about the art. 

These are images of people I’ve met in Columbus in different ways. Some I met in bars. One I got to know commuting on the #4 COTA bus. One is an old friend who was the first person to bring me to this city. I went with each person to a place we had met or maybe made a memory. I handed everyone one end of a piece of red yarn. In many folklores, a red thread signifies fate or true love. But to me, it’s simple: we were there. I see you, and you saw me, holding the camera and the other end of the string. You are invited to imagine stepping through the frame, meeting these people, and holding it too. 

If I am somewhat direct in this statement, it’s because I get weary sometimes of the numbers and pieces of paper we must collect in order to exist. Before we reach consciousness, identity documents dictate much about what we may call ourselves, in what comfort we may learn and grow, and on which side of borders we may live. So I asked my subjects to imagine a funny concept with me: a document that represents them not within the lines, boxes, and binary questions that a system demands for its convenience, but hopefully with honesty, tenderness, and vulnerability. This I see as another red thread, between them and me, and now between us and you, who read all the text on the gallery wall.

Emma Brown

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