June 23 – July 27, 2017

Arrowhead Gallery

Sandy Summit by Carla Fisher Schwartz, 2016, Inkjet print and binder's board, 22" x 22" x 3'

Carla Fisher Schwartz's Project Statement:
My practice investigates the conceptual and poetic implications of mapmaking, specifically, how mapping technologies frame our experience of the physical world. My current interest is in the nature of the amateur explorer via virtual representations of the world through satellite maps like Google Earth. The “desktop explorer”, surveying remote regions from familiar territory, serves as a contemporary substitute for the popular archetype of the historical adventurer. In my work, I raise questions about the virtual experience of the world through printed media, sculptural objects and video installation.

My work frequently references places that do not exist in the physical world, such as phantom islands and other invented geographies. Sandy Island, a nonexistent landmass that persisted on traditional and virtual maps until 2012, is the basis for several recent works, including an installation of a tourist bureau with assorted postcards advertising the island as a viable travel destination using imagery from Google Earth. Consequently, my work often alludes to fictitious or unlikely places and situations using appropriated images and objects as the raw material for prints, objects and videos. For example, a recent series of polygonal print sculptures depicting lost landmasses through the aesthetics of 3D modeling incorporated open-source 2D textures intended for use in sandbox video games. Additionally, a related installation imagined an absurd expedition to Sandy Island featuring an inflatable boat filled with seemingly useless store-bought frivolities. Through these works, I aim to explore the relationship between the mapped image and emerging notions of exploration, virtuality, and the simulated environment.



Carla Fisher Schwartz is a visual artist and educator based in Chicago, IL. Her studio practice investigates the relationship between the mapped image and contemporary notions of exploration, virtuality, and the simulated environment through print media, sculpture and video installation. Her art has been exhibited across the United States, including the Chicago Artists Coalition (Chicago, IL), the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum (St. Louis, MO), the Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago, IL), the McKendree University Art Gallery (Lebanon, IL), and the Kala Art Institute (Berkeley, CA). Recent residencies include HATCH Projects (Chicago, IL) and The Hyde Park Art Center Program (Chicago, IL), and a studio fellowship with Spudnik Press Cooperative. Schwartz received her MFA in Visual Arts from Washington University in St. Louis, where she was awarded the Bell Cramer Award in Printmaking. She received her BA in Studio Art with a minor in the History of Art and Visual Culture from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is currently a lecturer in the Department of Art and Architecture at Harold Washington College.

Lecture: Upcoming lecture in the fall of 2017. See the Upcoming Visiting Artist page for details.
on the Sugar Grove Campus
All our lectures are free and open to the general public.

Workshop: Upcoming workshop in the fall of 2017. See the Upcoming Visiting Artist page for details.
on the Sugar Grove Campus
Our workshops are open to all current Waubonsee students (registration required).

For more information about the art exhibitions at Waubonsee Community College, contact Cecilia Vargas, Art Coordinator, at (630) 466-2964.


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Art Department:

Art Coordinator:
Cecilia Vargas, Von Ohlen Hall, Room 209
(630) 466-2964

Art Lab Assistant:
Esther Espino, Von Ohlen Hall, Room 240
(630) 466-5742