April 6-August 3, 2003
JULIE MEHRETU: DRAWING INTO PAINTING

Exhibition
GALLERY 7


   
Julie Mehretu's biography reads a bit like an atlas. She was born in Ethiopia, raised in Michigan, educated in Senegal and Rhode Island, and now lives in New York. It is no surprise, then, that her work incorporates the dynamic visual vocabulary of maps, urban-planning grids, and architectural forms as it alternates between historical narratives and fictional landscapes. One of the artists featured in the Walker's 2001 exhibition Painting at the Edge of the World, Mehretu creates beautifully layered paintings that combine abstract forms with the familiar, such as the Roman Coliseum and floor plans from international airports. This exhibition features nine newly commissioned, large-scale paintings and concludes her yearlong artist residency at the Walker.
 
 
Image
Julie Mehretu
RENEGADE DELIRIUM
2002
private collection, London

 


Mehretu combines a personal language of signs and symbols with architectural imagery to create her elaborate semi-abstractions. Simultaneously engaged with the formal concerns of color and line and the social concerns of power, history, globalism, and personal narrative, she is interested in "the multifaceted layers of place, space, and time that impact the formation of personal and communal identity." The underlying structure of her work consists of socially charged public spaces--government buildings, museums, stadiums, schools, and airports--drawn in the form of maps and diagrams. She inscribes her own narrative into these decontextualized, highly controlled spaces through the layering of personal markings. Mehretu achieves an effect of compositional maelstrom, as elements advance and recede within the graphically ambiguous spaces. With paintings that blur the line between figuration and abstraction while constantly referencing the world around us, she creates perfect metaphors for the increasingly interconnected and complex character of the 21st century.

Mehretu was the recipient of the 2001 Penny McCall Award. Her work has been included in Greater New York, P.S.1 Contemporary Arts Center, New York (2000), and she has participated in numerous group exhibitions, including one at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson (2000). Most recently, her work has appeared in Free Style at the Studio Museum in Harlem (2001); The Americans at the Barbican Gallery in London (2001); the Busan Biennale in Korea (2002); the 8th Baltic Triennial in Vilnius, Lithuania (2002); and Drawing Now: Eight Propositions (2002) at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Image
Julie Mehretu
DISPERSION
2002
collection Nicolas and Jeanne Greenberg, New York


IN THE WALKER ART CENTER SHOP
JULIE MEHRETU: DRAWING INTO PAINTING

This fully illustrated catalogue features Julie Mehretu's newest paintings and an in-depth interview with the artist. Available May 2003. Softcover; $24.95 ($22.46 Walker members).


ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE: MINNEAPOLIS AND ST. PAUL ARE EAST AFRICAN CITIES
Check out Julie Mehretu's online project: tcEastAfrica.walkerart.org The hundreds of photographs and sound recordings created by the residency participants have become part of the Hennepin History Museum's permanent collection. A selection is on display April 19-October 31, 2003.

RELATED EVENTS

FREE TOURS
SATURDAY, JULY 5, 2 PM
SATURDAY, JULY 12, 2 PM
SUNDAY, JULY 27, 2 PM
SUNDAY, AUGUST 3, 2 PM
Join the Walker Art Center's knowledgeable tour guides for a lively, engaging, and informative tour of the exhibition.



JUNE EVENTS

FREE TOURS
SUNDAY, JUNE 8, 2 PM
SATURDAY, JUNE 28, 2 PM
Join the Walker Art Center's knowledgeable tour guides for a lively, engaging, and informative tour of the exhibition.


MAY EVENTS


ONLINE FORUM WITH JULIE MEHRETU
MAY 5-9
Join Walker artist-in-residence Julie Mehretu online to discuss various issues--family history, migration, geography, war, cultural history, finding/creating home, personal narrative--that recur in her paintings and her residency project with Twin Cities teens. Log on to ask questions, make comments, or read what others have to say. Registration is free.
THE WALKER ART CENTER'S ONLINE FORUMS ARE HOSTED BY MNARTISTS.ORG, A PROJECT OF THE MCKNIGHT FOUNDATION AND THE WALKER ART CENTER.

MINNEAPOLIS AND ST. PAUL ARE EAST AFRICAN CITIES: COMMUNITY FORUM
THURSDAY, MAY 8, 7 PM, LECTURE ROOM
Participants from Mehretu's artist residency project discuss their experiences. For more information about the project, visit tcEastAfrica.walkerart.org.

FREE TOURS
SATURDAY, MAY 10, 2 PM
SUNDAY, MAY 18, 2 PM
SATURDAY, MAY 24, 2 PM
Join the Walker Art Center's knowledgeable tour guides for a lively, engaging, and informative tour of the exhibition.

APRIL EVENTS

OPENING-DAY DIALOGUE: JULIE MEHRETU: DRAWING INTO PAINTING
SUNDAY, APRIL 6, 2 PM FREE WITH GALLERY ADMISSION GALLERY 7
Join Julie Mehretu and exhibition curator Douglas Fogle for a conversation about Mehretu's paintings. A reception follows.

FREE TOURS
SATURDAY, APRIL 12, 2 PM
SUNDAY, APRIL 27, 2 PM
Join the Walker Art Center's knowledgeable tour guides for a lively, engaging, and informative tour of the exhibition.




JULIE MEHRETU: DRAWING INTO PAINTING IS MADE POSSIBLE BY GENEROUS SUPPORT FROM THE VOYAGEUR FOUNDATION FUND OF THE MINNEAPOLIS FOUNDATION.