Kate Bonner's exciting new photo-based works are anchored in digital processes in dialog with drawing, painting, sculpture and collage. Part photo, part object, the work is generated through a process of making and breaking apart. She folds or cuts found photographs into pieces and then scans them, producing a new image to manipulate with photo-editing software and analog tools.
With a CNC router, Bonner cuts narrow wavy lines and wide vector strokes from the surface of her work. These lines and vectors mimic the hand-produced gestures of finger painting, sketching or erasing. Bonner also uses found and original paintings to add texture to her images. Folded and cut apart, and then scanned, the rolled and crimped paintings create an illusion of depth. These painterly gestures and references to hand work are edited and reproduced through digital means. The digital gesture and the material gesture conspire and vie for attention.
Kate Bonnerhas used a number of descriptions, or poetic analogies, to describe her work and point toward an understanding of her vision, including statements such as:
“Time is slipping. A moment ago this image stood alone. Now it catches against that other one. It flips upside down. The pixels snag, are turned into paint.”
“There is frost on the window; with my finger I trace a wavering, circling line. The window is a frame. The frost is a screen. My finger is a pen...”
“The images drift into corners. They are tracked in from outside, they lean against the wall. With a passive interest, the camera observes from the hall, from around the way.”
Rather than a raison d’êtrethese statements function like traces of something seen and experienced, much the same way that her work captures the shifting, slippery path between a thought and it’s object—the fleeting metaphysical transformation of ideas into form. Bonner’s work mines this ever-expanding space that digital processes have given her access to. Less limited by material parameters, “with digital tools, one photograph is painted into the fabric of another. Two moments appear as parallel visions, torn and spliced together.”