‘Eyeshine

Wendy Given and Ryan Pierce: mysteries in the wilderness

The exhibition 'Eyeshine' combines the work of Ryan Pierce and Wendy Given that grew out of a shared Signal Fire Outpost residency

By GRACE KOOK-ANDERSON

Eyeshine is the first of a series of exhibitions that Wendy Given and Ryan Pierce are presenting around the subjects of wildness and the night. In the bright and airy Autzen Gallery at Portland State University, the artists reflect and touch upon these and other interests that stem from the natural world.

The idea for Eyeshine came together as Given and Pierce hosted this past summer’s Signal Fire Outpost Residency—an intensive residency program set on public land. Their discussions, usually at night after full and active days, wandered around such topics as wilderness, animal and plant imagery, nocturnal life, and the embodiment of mysticism.

'Eyeshine' features the work of Wendy Given and Ryan Pierce at Autzen Gallery, PSU/Photo by  Matt Blum

‘Eyeshine’ features the work of Wendy Given and Ryan Pierce at Autzen Gallery, PSU/Photo by Matt Blum

Though both artists are inspired by nature, their work doesn’t idealize the natural world, and neither takes on romantic notions of the untrammeled landscape. Rather, both Given and Pierce are concerned with nature in its present condition through an historic lens—a contentious landscape, rife with the consequences of modernity.

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