Marymount University wants to welcome the community to its new state-of-the-art Ballston Gallery with a free reception to meet artist Molly Springfield from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 28. Springfield’s drawings are featured in the debut exhibit, “Excerpts,” at the recently completed Ballston Center, 1000 North Glebe Road.
The exhibit runs Aug. 31 through Oct. 21. Regular gallery hours are from 1 to 6 p.m., Thursdays through Saturdays.
The Washington, D.C.-based artist is known for her meticulously rendered graphite drawings of photocopies of printed books and often makes work that considers the changing nature of reading in an era of digital transformation.
“These drawings include a mixture of marginalia and annotations that people make in books,” said Paul Shortt, the gallery’s interim director. “Maybe they underline a phrase or make a little dot next to a writing. They almost look like large photocopies, but once you get up close, you can tell that they are painstakingly drawn with graphite.”
“As an educational institution, Marymount University strongly supports the arts,” said Bridget Murphy, associate provost and professor of communication and media design. “This state-of-the-art gallery showcases the university’s support of the liberal arts tradition and will be an asset to the Arlington and Washington metropolitan community. The long-term plan of the contemporary space is to strengthen the arts community by exhibiting local, regional and international artists.”
Murphy envisions partnering with other cultural organizations and museums in the D.C. area to exhibit thought-provoking and creative work for everyone in the community to experience.
Springfield’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Sally & Wynn Kramarsky Collection, and Francis H. Williams Collection. She received her MFA from the University of California, Berkeley in 2004, was a participant at Skowhegan in 2006, and a MacDowell Colony Fellow in 2016.
The source material for the drawings in Excerpts comes from her ongoing project, The Marginalia Archive–a functioning archive of contemporary examples of readers’ written annotations of texts, which she has been soliciting and collecting since 2007. The archive, some of which will be included in the exhibition, includes a large selection of found marginalia from books in Washington, D.C.’s public library.
Marymount University is an independent, coeducational Catholic university offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in a wide range of disciplines.