Mapping Memories of Place and Space: Peter Anderson and Caleb Brown

Mapping Memories of Place and Space: Peter Anderson and Caleb Brown

Mapping Memories of Place and Space

Mapping Memories of Place and Space: Peter Anderson and Caleb Brown

Opening Reception, Friday, May 10, 5-7 PM | The Rebecca Lawrence Gallery | The Clifford B. West Gallery

Peter Anderson’s current work combines a fascination with two ideas: maps and memory. For him, a map is an abstracted image – a view of a specific location as seen from above in two dimensions, without a horizon line.  He combines that point of view with memories of places he has lived in or traveled to over the last 73 years.  He doesn’t create one discreet image of a place but a series of related pieces which are variations of memories and dreams of those locations.  Anderson’s work is a combination of painting, printmaking, and in some cases, digital manipulation.  His goal is to evoke the experience of remembering where he has been– not a representation of what it looked like.

For Caleb Brown, a map of the past is built of superimposed layers. Like the grid of roads and splotches of vegetation printed on a paper map, multiple levels of information must be viewed together to get the whole picture, a picture that is flat and three-dimensional at the same time. The first layer of the map addresses memory and the past. Juxtaposed objects with differing scales, weights, and surfaces enact human relationships. Some of Brown’s work combines images of vehicles that either transport cargo from here to there (cars and trucks) or transform their contents into waste. The second layer presents the ravages of time. (Brown painted most of these small watercolors while caring for his mother in home hospice during the fall and winter of 2023.) At first, we note the pristine treats or appealing produce, but soon observe bruising as the food ages. We unconsciously assess what can be salvaged and which items are safe enough to eat. With everything going bad, the only elements immune to decay are the plastic fruit stickers. A third layer challenges the notion of containment; none of these sculptural paintings are forced into rectangles. Just as a living body occupies more space as it grows, the irregular contours of these panels assert themselves against an unbroken gallery wall (or project into the gallery itself). In addition, Brown’s chosen subjects are open or have been forced open. For example, the two-sided wooden station wagon painted on rigid foam insulation is shedding its foil wrapper. In another work, we are looking into a cardboard box at a broken toy, the interior of a toy; is physically exposed, creating a literal cut-away view. Then, just at the point when the symbolism is making sense, we must dispense with the map we’ve been given and find our way. After all, maps are not real. The artwork in Mapping Memories of Place and Space is real, however, and despite the layers of meaning, it celebrates unexpected combinations of forms using unexpected materials. Unlike the conceptual map, Caleb Brown’s art is tangible and hand-built… and fun to get lost in.

Peter Anderson | Biography

Peter Anderson was born in Roswell, NM. He grew up there and in Colorado.  For the last 50 years, he has been involved in several vocations: English teacher in Japan, international banker, entrepreneur, and founder of an apparel manufacturing company.  Since the mid-1990s Peter has been involved with several technology/software companies including SAP and Salesforce.  For the last 16 years, he has been a partner in a systems integration consulting firm. During that time Anderson has always studied and made art. In 2000, he and his wife Patti moved from New York City to Canaan, NH, and for the first time was able to have a proper studio space which allowed him to start working in larger formats and experiment with new processes.   He currently lives and maintains a studio in New London, NH.

Caleb Brown | Biography

Caleb Brown was born in Boston, MA in 1969. He earned a graduate printmaking certificate at the Kyoto University of Art in Japan in 1990 and a BA in visual art and religious studies from Brown University in 1991. He has exhibited in the U.S. and abroad including at Praise Shadows Art Gallery in Brookline, Massachusetts; the Bromfield Gallery in Boston, MA; the Danforth Museum in Framingham, MA; the Nassau County Art Museum in Sandy Point, New York; the Vanderbilt Estate Museum in Centerport, NY; The Hague Museum of Art (the Netherlands); and the Dino Gallery (Japan). Caleb and his wife live and work in Massachusetts and have adult twin sons.

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