Northwest Community College

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Thursday March 02, 2017

Arabesque, works by Krista Narciso (March 2nd-April 7th)

Arabesque, works by Krista Narciso
March 2- April 7
Opening March 2, 5:30pm-7:30pm
Founders Hall Art Gallery: Monday-Friday 9am-5pm

Arabesque, in visual art: surface decorations based on scrolling and interlacing foliage and tendrils. There is an emphasis on leafy forms, twining stems, and the vine.

Arabesque, in dance: a posture in which the body is supported on one leg, with the other leg extended behind the body. The dancer’s body spirals from the top of the head, through the back and then straightens along the extended leg.

A brief history: The arabesque originated in Islamic art of the 8th century, which typically used stylized leaves combined with spiraling stems. It was first used in the Western world in Italy in the 16th century to describe the “running scrolls” that ran vertically up a panel or pilaster. In France, the arabesque form was adopted in embroidery and garden design.

The work in the Arabesque series utilizes rhythmic, linear plant forms as a nod to my past as a dancer and recent return to dancing. Plant forms consisting of heavy leaves balancing on delicate stems create tension, just as there is a certain tension in the body of a dancer balancing on one leg in an arabesque. The tension always exists in a place between effort and surrender.

Scrolls hang in the middle of the room and drawings are clustered on the walls like leaves to create this installation. As viewers circulate around the room, the work begins to dance, breathe, and create a subtle sound.