Kathleen King and Kerry Vander Meer present “Duet,” a two-person show where they approach abstraction from different perspectives, culminating in a vibrant, immersive installation. Kathleen King’s work uses urban-derived geometry and materials to build larger forms from smaller parts. Kerry Vander Meer’s work is organic and textured, following the lines and shapes of nature.The artists’ collaboration intertwines ideas, forms, and colors from their signature styles to create vivid sculpture in paint, wood, and textile.
King and Vander Meer had conversations over many months about pursuing joy in life, especially in difficult, discordant times where unsolved problems feel overwhelming. They found a key inspiration in the writing of Thich Nhat Hanh which reminded them that nothing exists without its opposite: that there is no joy without suffering.
Hanh’s prescription is transforming suffering into happiness using five processes: letting go of attachment, inviting positive seeds to grow in consciousness, mindful breathing, concentrating on the present moment, and seeing reality with clarity. The artists wondered, could we perform a duet with these strategies in mind?
“Duet” is presented in early summer, the season most associated with joy. Summer encourages living in the present moment, but is always tinged with the reality that it’s feeling doesn’t last. This modal transit between joy and suffering is the duet that we live–reflected in human nature and this body of work.