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Rochester Art Center presents 3rd Floor Emerging Artist exhibition Anna Boyer: Frozen Music
Anna Boyer, Breath: the shape of sound, 2013, letterpress from photopolymer plates on handmade abaca paper by Cave Paper, 18 x 13 inches, from a series of four prints.

ROCHESTER, MN.- In her exhibition Frozen Music, Anna Boyer examines the junction of organic and structural form through a series of new works that use performed music as their point of departure. In doing so, she considers and presents to the viewer a unique project where, as the artist states, the “formulaic meets the idiosyncratic.”

Boyer’s prints and thread installations in this exhibition address a transformation of space and experience occurring as music is vocalized. From the composer’s score to the singer’s exhaled tone, numerous visual, cognitive, respiratory, and auditory processes engage and release the musical notations from the controlled page. In her works on paper, Boyer explores the shaping of sound in the human body. The act of breathing, the movement of the diaphragm, and the activation of the vocal chords are required for production of musical sound.

Comprising the main elements of the exhibition are two large thread installations, joined by a recorded sound work that emanates throughout the gallery via audio speakers. This track of recorded music is generated from As the Sunflower Turns on Her God, a composition written by composer Tim Takach. His work derives inspiration and is organized by the principals of the Fibonacci sequence—a mathematical progression or structure that frequently appears in nature. Also know as the Golden Ratio, it can be understood in the form of growth in branching trees, the patterns inherent in shells, or the growth of flower petals. Boyer describes her thread installations as visual interpretation of choral music. She “sews” the musical structure on the wall, but is unable to contain the music, which when sung by a choir transcends notation. The physiological processes of breathing and singing and the resultant layering of voices and sounds transform singular notes and voices and the space around them. While the thread installations appear linear and monochromatic like the notes on sheet music, the mechanics of the planned song give way to patterns and an environment of sound.

Chief Curator Kris Douglas states “In this exhibition, Boyer invites the audience to enter a space of transformed music and by physically participating in the environment and perceiving the processes and outcomes, to further alter them.”

Anna Boyer is a letterpress printmaker, bookmaker, and installation artist from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She received an MFA in Book Arts/Printmaking from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia (2012) and a BA in English from the College of Saint Benedict (2008). Boyer is currently an adjunct instructor at the College of Saint Benedict & St. John’s University and also teaches letterpress and bookmaking at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts. In her youth, she sang with her sisters in a community choir in Minnetonka.

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