through December 31, 2022

The Blue of Distance

Sienna Patti Contemporary is proud to present this solo exhibition of artist Alicia Eggert featuring her most recent work, The Blue of Distance, as well as a limited edition of lenticular prints.

The Blue of Distance is an animated neon sign that alternates between two messages: “IMAGINE THE DISTANCE FROM HERE” and “IMAGINE THE TIME FROM NOW.” The text and the deep blue color of the neon are inspired by Rebecca Solnit’s essay, “The Blue of Distance.” In it, Solnit describes blue as the color “of horizons, of remote mountain ranges, of anything far away. The color of that distance is the color of an emotion, the color of solitude and of desire, the color of there seen from here, the color of where you are not.”

The work continues Eggert’s philosophical exploration of language and time.  Using the language of commercial signage such as neon, steel, plastic, inflatables, and flowers, Eggert poses existential conundrums.  Taking inspiration from astrophysics, existential philosophy, and semiotics, these “signs” highlight and question one’s experience of reality from a cosmic perspective.

Eggert builds upon the work of Bruce Nauman and Jenny Holzer.  All employ the material vocabulary of commercial signage to examine the existential truths and the limits of language.  In 1967, Nauman made a circular neon sign that illuminated the words “The true artist helps the world by revealing mystic truths.”  Holzer built upon Nauman’s legacy with her Truisms from the late 1970s and early 1980s, sayings that could be read equally as deep and philosophical or banal and ironic.  Eggert’s musings are truisms of another kind: plain facts illuminating existential phenomena.

Alicia Eggert‘s work has been exhibited at notable institutions nationally and internationally, including the CAFA Art Museum in Beijing, the Triennale Design Museum in Milan, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Corning Museum of Glass, the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History, the Telfair Museums, and many more. Recent solo exhibitions have been held at Liliana Bloch Gallery (Dallas, TX), Artspace (Raleigh, NC), and Galeria Fernando Santos (Porto, Portugal). Eggert has received numerous honors and awards, including a TED Fellowship, a Washington Award from the S&R Foundation, a Direct Artist Grant from the Harpo Foundation, an Artist Microgrant from the Nasher Sculpture Center, and an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Maine Arts Commission. She has been an artist in residence at Google Tilt Brush, Sculpture Space, True/False Film Festival, and the Tides Institute and Museum of Art. In 2020, she was added to the Fulbright Specialist Roster by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Her work can currently be seen in This Present Moment: Crafting a Better World Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery. at the Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C., and for a brief time this fall, on the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania. Recent public commissions include OURs, commissioned by Planned Parenthood Foundation of America and displayed at various locations across the United States, including the Supreme Court of the United States, Washington, DC and IT IS TIME, commissioned by TED and Fine Acts.

Eggert earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Drexel University in 2004, and a Masters of Fine Arts from Alfred University in 2009 and is currently an Associate Professor of Studio Art and the Sculpture Program Coordinator at the University of North Texas.

This Present Moment, 2019
Lenticular print mounted to aluminum Dibond
24 x 36 inch

This is a lenticular print of a neon sculpture that cycles through the statements “This present moment used to be the unimaginable future” and “This moment used to be the future” before turning off entirely for a short time. The text is a quote by Stewart Brand, an American writer who is best known as the editor of the Whole Earth Catalogue.

On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, 2016-2017
Lenticular print mounted to aluminum Dibond
24 x 36 inch

Originally a temporary public sculpture, “On A Clear Day You Can See Forever,” was installed on Dudley Island in 2016. The sculpture consisted of a steel scaffolding structure that was 15 feet tall, 50 feet wide, and 8 feet deep, which supported 8-foot-tall painted plywood letters that spelled the word FOREVER. It was visible from Lubec, Maine, which is the easternmost town in the contiguous United States. A video, filmed in real-time, documented the sculpture as it slowly appeared out of a dense grey fog. The gradual evaporation of the fog is coupled with the meditative sounds of crashing ocean waves and the warning sounds of distant fog horns.