An Annisquam mother and daughter have teamed up in a contemporary exhibition titled “water water” now on display at the Cape Ann Museum.
The multimedia installation by Sarah Hollis Perry and her daughter Rachel Perry Welty includes several elements. Featured is a video performance, “Drawing a Line with the Tide,” filmed on an Annisquam beach last July, which incorporated 80 volunteers from the seaside village. This film is projected on a large wall in the exhibition room.
Another element is an eye-catching piece created out of a mound of driftwood wrapped in shiny foil. On a nearby wall hangs a large photograph of a single large piece of driftwood wrapped in foil that is a site-specific installation on the shores of Annisquam.
The installation also incorporates five short films in which the artists explore aspects of the complexity of the mother-daughter relationship of dependence, independence, and interdependence, according to a press release.
“I come from a large warm family and as I got older, I discovered what many adult children do — that you sort of become friends with your parents and I feel very lucky to have a best friend in my mother,” said Welty.
Perry and Welty have worked collaboratively since they overlapped as students at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in 2000, and maintain their individual work.
Ronda Faloon, the Gloucester museum’s director, noted that the “Marsden Ha
rtley: Soliloquy in Dogtown” and “water, water” exhibitions explore the interrelationship of Cape Ann’s people and its physical beauty.
“They draw on the museum’s great strength — its ability to honor the area’s rich artistic history, while celebrating contemporary artistic expression. We hope that the two together inspire conver
sations across time,” Faloon said.
The subject of water is only natural for the artists who live on an island.
“When you live in Gloucester you are very aware of the water and the tide, and it governs our lives in many ways, and time is part of it. The cycle of tide and time makes a big difference in our lives,” Perry said.
Welty, who recently had an exhibition at The Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum in New Jersey, said community involvement was important to her and mother as they developed this collaborative project.
“In this community, everyone helps everyone, and it seemed a natural extension to involve our friends and neighbors,” said Welty.
Perry earned a bachelor’s degree in art history from Smith College and a diploma and fifth-year certificate from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, winning a Traveling Scholarship in 2000. While completing her studies, she was awarded prizes in sculpture, printmaking and
paper-making. She has taught paper-making at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and appeared as visiting artist at the Louisiana Tech University School of
Art and at the Ellis School in Pittsburgh, Pa.
Born in 1962, in Tokyo, Japan, Welty earned a bachelor of arts degree from Connecticut College and a diploma and fifth-year certificate from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Welty has had numerous solo and group exhibitions in galleries and museums in Boston, New York, and around the world. In December 2011, she had a four-page photographic essay in Vogue magazine. Her work has been featured or reviewed in national and international publications including Art in America, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, Harvard Business Review and Sculpture Magazine.
In January 2006, Perry and Welty showed collaborative video at The Creative Center in New York City, and on Boston’s First Night in 2006, Perry and Welty showed a video-sculpture “Time” on the Boston Common.
The artists will hold a gallery talk at the Cape Ann Museum on Saturday, July 21, as well as Aug. 1, at 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. Cost is $10 members; $20 nonmembers (includes museum admi
ssion). Reservations are required. For information, call the museum at 978-283-0455 or visit www.capeannmuseum.org. The exhibit runs through Sept. 30.
Gail McCarthy may be contacted at 978-283-7000, ext. 3445, or email@example.com.