SAN JUAN ISLANDS MUSUEM OF ART

DOMESTIC BLISS | Holly Ballard Martz 

June 25 – Aug 17th, 2020

“I am drawn to Holly’s complex simplicity. Her ability to create aesthetically pleasing objects while challenging perspectives is skillful. Each work exhibited in Domestic Bliss conveys original viewpoints while supporting strength to an overall message. Her work allows one to contemplate societal issues using known objects, which is a reflection on society itself.”

– Peter Lane, SJIMA DOE

“This year, 2020, marks the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution, asserting women’s right to vote. Much progress has been made in the fight for women’s equality in the intervening years, and this is a milestone to be celebrated, yet we are far from a level playing field. It is estimated that it will take an additional two hundred years to eliminate the gender pay gap. Reproductive rights are in jeopardy, maternal mortality is on the rise, and globally 75% of unpaid work is done by women. This labor falls primarily within the domestic sphere. Domestic Bliss transforms objects associated with domestic labor, traditionally the purview of women, and supplants their original purpose and highlights obstacles which impede the quest for gender equality.” 

– Holly Ballard Martz

DANGER OF NOSTALGIA (IN UTERO)

wire coat hanger, steel wire, and paint
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“I spent weeks painstakingly bending hundreds of wire coat hangers into the likeness of the female reproductive system, an exercise in endurance for my hands and a representation of the slow and painful trudge towards full reproductive rights for women in America. I layered and stacked men’s detachable shirt collars as stand-ins for institutionalized sexism.”

Holly Ballard Martz

lady madonna by Holly Ballard Martz

LADY MADONA

powder coated ironing board, brass plated metal rings, LED; 72” x 16” x 1.125”; 2020

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WOMEN’S WORK IS NEVER DONE (GILDED AGE)

11 X 19 X 2.5″ inflatable hanger, glass seed beads, thread, polyfil

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PRIME CUTS

dressmaker’s ham, steel pins, sequins, glass beads

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LOVE HURTS (LOVE YOU TO DEATH)

30” x 40”spent bullet primers and encaustic on panel; 2019

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DOMESTIC BLISS

29 X 38 X 1.25″cast iron ironing trivets, gold leaf, plastic lighting gel filters;  2020

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“Thousands of sequins have been affixed to forms typically used in the construction and pressing of garments, morphing them into glittering body parts and cuts of meat, as women’s bodies are often reduced to decoration and objects of desire. I deliberately chose to work with materials and processes long considered the female domain as a reminder that with every prick of the pin and curve of the wire, women’s work is truly never done.”

– Holly Ballard Martz

ENSNARED

retractable clotheslines, dyed cotton clotheslines, cast iron irons, needle threaders; dimensions variable; 2020

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LADY MADONA

powder coated ironing board, brass plated metal rings, LED; 72” x 16” x 1.125”; 2020

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OLD GROWTH

10.5” x 9” x 2.25” men’s detachable shirt collars and polyester resin; 2020

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POWER GRID

16 X 16″ vintage men’s detachable shirt collars

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OBJECTS IN THE MIRROR ARE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR (sexist) – with reflection of danger of nostalgia in wallpaper form

x-ray viewer, two-way mirror acrylic, vinyl; 18.5” x 14” x 6”; 2016
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One of our goals at the San Juan Islands Museum of Art is to lift others through education. To shine light where it is needed. Using everyday objects such as an ironing board and clothes hangers, Holly has created artwork which fosters contemplation of history, while acknowledging attention where it is still required. Holly’s artwork lulls one in with beauty while creating an undercurrent of unease. Her work naturally fosters conversations from this juxtaposition. We at the San Juan Islands Museum of Art appreciate conversations.

– Peter Lane, SJIMA DOE

This exhibition is sponsored by The Honeywell Charitable Fund, Kim Miller, San Juan County, Town of Friday Harbor, San Juan Island Community Foundation, Printonyx, Harbor Rentals and Browne’s Home Center.