Threads Through Time-Rena Detrixhe

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Rena Detrixhe
Red Dirt Rug, 2020
Loose red Oklahoma soil, imprinted with modified shoe soles


Rena Detrixhe is an interdisciplinary artist currently based in Salina, KS where she is working as a Research Resident with The Land Institute. Through large-scale objects and installations, ephemeral sculpture, performance, drawings, and process-based work, she explores systems of value and cultural relations to land and the more-than-human world with attention to histories of injustice. Her current research is focused on Midwestern agriculture as both an important cultural signifier, and a deeply troubled relationship to the land.

Her research is supported by multiple grants and residencies including: a Serenbe Co-Esistere Residency, Stoneleaf Retreat, Tallgrass Artist Residency at the Konza Prairie Biological Station, a two-year residency with Charlotte Street Foundation in Kansas City, and a three-year residency with the Tulsa Artist Fellowship among others. Detrixhe has lectured in universities and museums throughout the US and presented at the 27th annual International Sculpture Conference. In 2017 she received both the public and juried vote award at ArtPrize for her work Red Dirt Rug. Detrixhe holds a BFA from the University of Kansas.  From:

Artist Statement:

I weave carpets from dust, transform seeds into lace, suspend a fleeting moment of rain droplets on window into a solid cast form. Guided by the poetic and inherent qualities of a material and a personal interest in history, memory and geography, I respond. I might become immersed in conversation with a single tree, the collective memories embedded in soil, or an entire geological epoch, always searching for deeper understanding of environment, of relationships, and of place. I am drawn to materials that hold stories from their familiar sources. I study them until my hands develop a means to respond and a conversation ensues. My intricate constellations from these materials culminate in drawings, sculptures and site-specific installations. With intense focus and repetition I participate in a meditative act, perhaps similar to the labor of crochet, embroidery or weaving. I pursue a poetic understanding of time, material, history, and place, along with a constant reckoning of human impact and cultural relations to the land with attention to histories of injustice. In my most recent work I engage in laborious processes, refining soil and sculpting it into delicate ephemeral sculptures that investigate the complicated history of the landscape and systems of value.