MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The Gallery at 1978 Maplewood Arts Center, 1978 Springfield Ave. in Maplewood, presents the works of Christine Romanell this August. “Everything is Connected” opens Aug. 4 and runs through Aug. 31. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, Aug. 11, from 5 to 8 p.m., and an artist talk on Sunday, Aug. 19, from 3 to 5 p.m.
“What happens if a pattern doesn’t repeat but has long range order? My work investigates non-repeating patterns in paintings, light sculptures and installations,” Romanell wrote in an artist’s statement. “The source material for the endless permutations in my work come from the properties of self-similarity, meaning the same form at different scales. Fractals are the most common example of self-similarity. Less common are quasicrystal patterns, which use rotational symmetry with a complicated set of rules to achieve self-similarity. The repetition of difference is a means of transformation. Descriptive and evocative, pattern is an imitation of the infinite.
“My work seeks to reveal connections between a variety of disciplines — material science, astrophysics, mathematics and medieval Islamic architecture,” she continued. “In the 1980s, the quasicrystal, an aluminum magnesium alloy, was accidentally created in a lab. That same material was then discovered in a meteorite in the 1990s. Quasicrystals are somewhere between a crystalline and amorphous substance that use the same five-fold rotation symmetry also found in the mathematical Penrose tiling. … These patterns channel a deeper meaning that transcends the merely decorative. If quasicrystal patterns permeate such a wide span of time, material and culture, could we be tapping into something much larger than ourselves? Carl Sagan once said, ‘We are all made of starstuff.’ That longing for connection to the origins of creation is the driving force behind all my work.”
Learn more about Romanell at www.christineromanell.com. 1978 Arts Center is open Saturdays and Sundays from 2 to 5 p.m. or by appointment at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit www.1978artscenter.org.
Photos Courtesy of 1978