HARRIET BART creates evocative content through the narrative power of objects, the theater of installation, and the intimacy of artists' books. She has a deep and abiding interest in the personal and cultural expression of memory - it is at the core of her work. Using bronze and stone, wood and paper, books and words, everyday and found objects, Bart's work signifies a site, marks an event, as it draws attention to imprints of the past as they live in the present. BART'S many works have been exhibited extensively throughout the United States and Germany. She has completed more than a dozen public art commissions in the United States, Japan, and Israel. She is a guest lecturer, curator, and founding member of the Traffic Zone Center for Visual Arts in Minneapolis, MN. Bart has published eight artist's books and has been the recipient of two Minnesota Book Awards.
MARCH 25 2011 marks the centenary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, one of the most infamous and deadly disasters of the American Industrial Revolution. Records indicate that 146 garment worker…s, most young immigrant women, perished in the flames or jumped to their deaths from the New York City sweatshop.
HARRIET BART'S installation, [url=http://www.babcockgalleries.com/node/harriet-bart-drawn-in-smoke/3825]DRAWN IN SMOKE Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Centenary[/url], revisits this historic event through a series of 160 elegiac drawings composed from smoke and soot. From these wispy and ethereal images emerge the inscribed names of those who died in the fire, filling the room with imagined/imaged smoke and the memory of those who perished. The lives of working class women during the first half of the 20th century has long been a source of inspiration and meaning in Bart's work, and related installations will accompany the exhibition, inviting visitors to re-examine the complexity, scope and aftermath of this particular tragedy as they experience the installation in the present.MORE
This solitary work of reading and writing is a public remembrance.
Paper scrolls inscribed with the names of more than 4000 American soldiers killed in the Iraqi war begin their cascade at ceiling hei…ght and spill down the wall across the floor. Metal plumbs hover in front of each scroll calling attention to that place where the true vertical reaches its earthly horizontal destination and the traffic of the world.MORE
[i]Between Echo and Silence [/i]is a solo exhibition at Macalester College's Law Warschaw Gallery in the new Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center. The exhibition features works produced by Harriet Bart in t…he last decade, in which historical awareness and political reflection are distilled into an eloquent and poetic form of expression.MORE
Enduring Afghanistan[i] commemorates the names of American soldiers who died in Afghanistan. Military I.D. tags, affixed to a piece of chain link fence suspended from the ceiling, present a topography… of death: the tags are arranged in a metallic map of Afghanistan, their depth corresponding to the numbers and locations of soldiers’ deaths. The fence speaks of separation but is also reminiscent of the fence of Ground Zero, which was effectively re-purposed for memorializing practices. In front of it sits a ledger, displayed on a carved wooden Koran stand. The ledger presents a list of names of fallen soldiers, which takes the place of the Koran, suggesting that these names have become a new text to be revered.[/i]
Curator, [i]Deceptive Distance[/i]
College of Visual Arts, St. Paul, MN
Comprised of 160 smoke-on-paper drawings, the installation commemorates the centenary of The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of March 25, 1911. Records indicate that at least 146 people, most of them… young immigrant women and girls, died in the fire. Each drawing is inscribed with the name of one of the victims. The names of the victims are taken from the list held at the Cornell University archive. This tragedy galvanized American labor practices, effecting major changes in workers’ rights and workplace safety.MORE