Marsha Cottrell

Catalog designed for Anthony Meier Fine Arts

Essay by Rachel Federman

from Anthony Meier Fine Arts website:
Marsha Cottrell's practice is centered around manipulation of the quotidian office computer and printer. Bridging drawing, printmaking, painting, and photography, Cottrell's process produces luminous images that allude to celestial bodies and interior landscapes.… her works meld the sensuality of the corporeal with the enigma of the intangible. 

from the essay by Rachel Federman:
These works are the result of an incremental, additive process that usually begins with Cottrell selecting a preset shape from the software’s tool palette. She alters and positions it on the screen, prints it, assesses the result, and returns to the computer to make the next move. Each adjustment on the monitor or pass through the printer carries a degree of risk. Will the printer behave as expected, or will it malfunction, undoing hours of labor? As this process suggests, Cottrell is interested in the ontology of the body as it relates to technology. Although her chosen tools impose limits, the works themselves gesture toward limitlessness. What does it mean to consider the monitor as a penetrable aperture, rather than a solid screen? 
Our most enduring ideas about sublimity come from the natural world, and in recent works, Cottrell has probed the traditional iconography of the sublime—vast horizons, glowing moons, radiating suns, solar eclipses. At a time when each of us holds in our pockets a powerful tool for photographic reproduction, these drawings remind us that the sublime is not located in representations of the visible, but in the effort of “alluding to the nondemonstrable.”

24 pages
8.5 x 11 inches