Curated Artist Registry

The White Columns Curated Artist Registry is an online catalog of digital images documenting the work of artists who are not affiliated with a commercial gallery in New York City. Each submission is reviewed by our curatorial staff; in order to be considered for the registry, one must submit work digitally via this website.

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Olivia Valentine
Des Moines IA US
Updated: 2018-01-01 17:21:12



My work as an artist is focused on the construction of edges and interstitial spaces. This line of inquiry began with my investigations into the space of the textile edge. Beginning with early examples of openwork embroidery, I traced the transition of lace structures from the center a cloth to its edge. This research resulted in a series of works named after one of the earliest needle lace edges, Punto in Aria, or Stitches in Air. Stemming from these textile constructions, I have since expanded the frame of my work to address the edges within architecture and the larger landscape.


I use the window as a literal and metaphorical threshold between interior and exterior space in several of my studio projects, including Guest Room at the Drake. Lace is often used as an edging, defining the boundaries between the private body and the public world. Windows similarly mediate between interior domestic space and the exterior public world. By constructing windows and exterior views using the techniques of fabric edging, and placing them in interior spaces, I am negotiating an expansion of the threshold between interior and exterior.


In 2012-13 I was a Fulbright Fellow in Turkey, researching the traditional headscarf edging called Oya. This research resulted in two studio projects - one urban and one rural. In Panorama, I used the urban landscape of the city of Izmir as material to create an architectural scale strand of Oya, installed between the interior and exterior spaces of the commercial arcades and alleyways off of Istiklal Caddesi in Istanbul. Later, in Yürüyüş Oyası (Walking Oya), I continued my expansion of the scale of oya in the region of Cappadocia, where the boundaries between landscape and architecture are blurred, and the ground and its edges are constantly changing due to erosion of the soft, volcanic terrain. I used my body as a means of creating Oya for the landscape, resulting in a series of documented walks.


Metropoliz Future Forest is a collaborative landscape intervention on the edges of the Museo dell'Altro e dell'Altrove di Metropoliz (MAAM), an informal immigrant community and art space in an abandoned salami factory on the periphery of Rome. Working with Firat Erdim and the design collaborative COMMONSTUDIO, we created a large-scale drawing that perforated the existing concrete to make a garden and community piazza. Interruptions, my series of watercolor drawings based on floor tiles patterns found in Rome, became the plan for this large scale drawing and garden. Rather than importing new vegetation for this future urban forest, in this project we are collaborating with the existing ecologies that already occupy the site - the grasses, trees, flowers and weeds that have arisen spontaneously in the decades after the closing of the factory. By creating a series of perforations and cuts in the existing concrete, we are helping the seeds of these species take root and continue to transform these spaces over the coming decades.

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