Carrie Ann Plank: Seeing Layers
Carrie Ann Plank is an San Francisco based artist working in the mediums of installation, printmaking, painting, and glass. Plank’s work is included in many private and public collections including the Fine Art Archives of the Library of Congress, Fine Art Museums of San Francisco, Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, the Guanlan Print Art Museum in China, and the Iraq National Library in Baghdad. Recent and upcoming noteworthy shows include solo shows at Themes + Projects in San Francisco, Bryant Street Gallery in Palo Alto, CA, DZINE Gallery in San Francisco, and Local Language, Oakland. Recent and upcoming residencies include Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT, Konstnärernas Kollektiva Grafikverkstad in Malmo, Sweden, Local Language, Oakland, CA, Edition/Basel: Printed in Cuba at the Taller Experimental de Gráfica de La Habana in Havana, Cuba, the Íslensk Grafík in Reykjavik, Iceland, Edition/Basel: Printed in Basel at Druckwerk in Basel, Switzerland, Mullowney Printing in San Francisco, CA, Haystack Mountain School of Craft in Deer Isle, ME, and Bullseye Glass in Emeryville, CA. Additionally, Plank has had a 20 year teaching career and most recently served as the Director of the Printmaking MFA & BFA Programs at the Academy of Art University before devoting herself solely to her artist practice in 2018. She is active in the local arts community as a participant, juror, and volunteer, and sits on the of board of Root Division and the California Society of Printmakers. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking from East Carolina University and her Masters of Fine Arts in Printmaking from the Pennsylvania State University. Plank’s work is represented by Themes + Projects in San Francisco and Bryant Street Gallery in Palo Alto.
The major focus of my work deals with visual portrayals of information systems. The work considers reinterpreting and reorganizing visual information systems and how context shifts meaning. I've always been fascinated by how principal and equation can be visually rendered and how this translation impacts the comprehension of data - be it obfuscation or clarification. I work with many layers of data visualization, from charting to mathematical equations to scientific principles. Mapping, numerical sequences, fractals, wave patterns, sound sources, magnetic field variations and other systems of scientific observation, overlay one another to create a pastiche of information visualization. I'm interested in the resulting noise of these visual systems, be it organically or theoretically derived, and how they interact. Layers overlap and interfere while creating abstraction from the concrete.
I work with multiple mediums including painting, glass work, traditional and experimental printmaking techniques, and mixed media instillation. I often employ emergent technologies to create matrices to work from, such as use of CNC routers and laser cutters. The amalgamation of technological assistance and traditional hand skills plays a large role in the work. Many pieces begin as digital rendering which become the matrix by routing, cutting, or hand carving, while ink is hand mixed by eye and traditionally applied. This results in works that straddle the hand and digital spheres. Works do not fall easily within a specific realm but encompass works on paper conventionally framed, mixed media pieces on panel, multiples and installation pieces utilizing a wide variety of materials, and site-specific installation pieces. Experimentation has always been a component of my studio practice.