Leah Mackin’s meditative black abstractions on white paper are born of drawing, photocopying and printmaking techniques, as she combines the objectivity of the machine with the subjectivity of artistic decision-making. Mackin runs her original drawings and folded paper sketches through a copy machine several times, making subtle manipulations to the image with each pass; the resulting geometric and moiré patterns are rendered in dense toner on paper. Her delicate abstractions reference the smudgy half-tones of newspaper reproductions, “happy accidents” that occur in printmaking and even the work of Andy Warhol and Christopher Wool. Mackin often presents the drawings in artist books finding that the bound format allows for variations within repetition while mimicking the duplication process of photocopying.
This is Philadelphia-based artist Leah Mackin's first show at Western Exhibitions. Chicagoans have previously seen her work in “The World As Text” at Columbia College in 2011. Her work has been presented at sophiajacob in Maryland and at numerous galleries in Pennsylvania including The Print Center and Space 1026. She has work in the collections of the University of Pennsylvania Rare Book and Manuscript Library and The Print and Picture Collection at the Free Library of Philadelphia. Mackin is a member artist at Space 1026 and holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking and Book Arts from The University of the Arts.
The show opens Friday, December 14 with a free public reception from 5 to 8pm and will run through January 23, 2013. Gallery hours are Wednesday to Saturday (and usually Tuesdays too), 11am to 6pm.