No comments yet

Artist Statement: Rhea Dennis

Moral Compass: Artists Respond to Crises

Temple Judea Museum exhibition January – March 2021

Rhea Dennis


Media: Unbleached Abaca and graphite

Under normal circumstances my artwork is bold, bright and optimistic. When we began quarantining back in March part of me relished the idea of confinement. Redirecting my time away from normal daily activities allowed me to be more introspective and to cleanse my way of thinking. I was living a more simplified life, a life that kept me from seeing family and friends except at a distance. 

I was not able to hug my grandchildren and it saddened me to think what had become their “new normal.” 

Due to the pandemic and the volatile political atmosphere I began to approach my work from a new perspective. Using only unbleached abaca fiber and graphite seemed to symbolize the isolation I was feeling and how small my world had become. I found comfort in working in such a limited manner. Concentrating on the marks I made on the paper allowed me to forget, for a time, what was happening in the world.

I’m hoping that 2021 will bring back the color and optimism!