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"Anna Von Mertens: Anna Von Mertens"
2006-08-05 until 2006-09-02
Jack Hanley Gallery
San Francisco, CA, USA United States of America

The Jack Hanley Gallery, San Francisco is delighted to present a solo exhibition, titled As the Stars Go By, of the work of Bay Area artist Anna Von Mertens. This body of work takes violent moments in Americaís history that have had a deep psychological impact and shows the star rotation pattern above these moments in time. The works have the proportions of a movie screen, representing historical events through the removed lens of observation, but in this format also revealing a literal vista, a window into a world. Events depicted include the Civil War Battle of Antietam, the single day in history in which the most Americans have died; the hour between the shot that killed him and the time Martin Luther King Jr. was pronounced dead on April 4, 1968; and the first sighting of land by Christopher Columbus off the coast of the Bahamas.

The work is intended to act on many levels: as a memorial, as actual celestial landscapes viewed from specific moments in history, as a study of astrological forces. But ultimately these works simply document a natural cycle that is oblivious and impassive to the violence below.

In 2005, Von Mertens's work was included in the Bay Area Now 4 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She has also shown work at Bard College in New York, the Pasadena Museum of California Art, the Berkeley Art Museum, Mills College Art Museum, Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery in Los Angeles, and Gallery Paule Anglim and Southern Exposure both in San Francisco. She has also participated in numerous residencies including those at the MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire, the San Francisco Arts Education Project and at the Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito, California. Von Mertens received an MFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts, in 2000.


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