Gualala Arts logo


Gualala Arts

Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

Archive of past events: 2004 through 2014

Span: a Remembrance
Large works by Suzan Friedland

Reception: Friday, May 6, 2011 at 5:00 p.m.
Exhibit open April 1 through May 29
Gualala Arts Center
Elaine Jacob Foyer

Span: a Remembrance Gualala Arts will present an exhibition of large works by artist Suzan Friedland from Friday, April 1 through Sunday, May 29, 2011. The exhibit reception will be Friday, May 6 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. along with The May Show.

In a recent piece in the New York Times by Mark Dow, the great architect Louis Sullivan was quoted as saying that he believed the pier, the lintel and the arch to be the basic elements of architecture. He called these "the three physical facts, the three symbols, I might say the three letters, which constitute the alphabet of our art." Rather than the natural assumption that the pier and lintel came first followed by the arch, Sullivan felt that all three arrived together as the result of a single imperative: span. "I feel pretty sure of this," he writes, "in my mind."

Span: a Remembrance Similarly Friedland wants to show that the history of the development of her style of textured surfaces, while having evolved, is also supported by a consistent vision that ties the works together and spans the period for which the pieces in the exhibition were made. She feels that the larger works best illustrate both the cohesion and evolution of her work. The foyer of the Gualala Arts Center is the perfect venue for this in providing the space to show a sufficient number of her larger pieces and thus named the exhibition "Span: a Remembrance."

Span: a Remembrance Friedland is an artist whose primary media are textiles and whose work has been most directly influenced by monochrome painting, minimalism, abstract expressionism and various movements associated with conceptual art. The majority of her recent work features an extended media palette and expressive brushwork in white or off-white paint over textured surfaces of wood, paper, clay and various metals in addition to textiles.

Though often classified as a textile artist, she prefers to be known as a "realist" because she is not interested in creating illusions, but only in presenting a direct expression created by the particular juxtaposition of materials she has chosen for a particular composition. Her lifelong experimentation with various media provides her with a large textural palette and thus a wide range of expression.

She often finds inspiration in science lectures and jazz clubs. Like Coleridge, who, when asked why he liked to attend science lectures rather than drinking with his fellow poets, replied that that's where he got his metaphors, she finds artistic inspiration in hearing about what scientists, mathematicians and musicians are thinking about. Like her art, music is typically not trying to represent abstract ideas, and she gets a sense of synesthesia when listening that allows her to translate sound patterns and textures into visual equivalents.

Gualala Arts 50th anniversary logo

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Join us in celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Gualala Arts, 1961 - 2011

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.