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Thomas Aaron: LAND/GAZE

The land, especially in the western United States, where vast expanses aren’t populated, seems like it has its own existence apart from people. We have tended to use the mythic power of all that space as a metaphor for independence.

The artworks of Thomas Aaron, however, gaze upon the ways our attempts to map out those expanses have been a way to both tame it and define it in different ways. Peering into the Public Land Survey System, which used a survey grid to plot out most of the region west of the Mississippi River, he uses paintings and drawings to probe the meanings of these mappings (“UT T12N R11W” is pictured).

As a form of visual information, maps have traced our relationships with the land in various contexts, and Aaron takes this information and filters it through the eye of the artist. Upon the “tabula rasa” that we conceptualized the land, he adds a level of artistic interpretation. (Brian Staker)

Date: Sep 20, 2012
Time: All Day