Works made with paper will be exhibited April 2-20

“An Unfinished Monument to Truth,” a virtual art exhibit by Mark Rospenda, will be on view April 2-30 at Ripon College. An artist’s talk will be presented at 7 p.m. April 2. Registration for the talk and a link to view the exhibit throughout the month is available at ripon.edu/art.

Included in the exhibit are recent drawings and sculptures, all made from paper. The work represents the artist’s “ongoing effort to hold on to something tangible — some sense of TRUTH — even as it transforms within my grasp.”

Using paper as a means of exploring the delicate, mutable nature of our thinking processes, Rospenda physically cuts into, shreds and converts his drawings into pulp. Parts and elements are exchanged between works with some evolving over a number of years. The images that result are moments within a stream of thinking and forgetting — records of memories lost, found and transforming.

“When the existence of alternative facts becomes the new normal, truth becomes slippery,” Rospenda says. “The decentralization of news media on the internet and a continued siloing away from dissenting opinions via social media has led to a simultaneous reinforcement of already held beliefs and a close-mindedness to others’ opinions. Lies, misdirection, deep fakes, propaganda and conspiracy theories further erode any shared perspective of the world.

“When even science is openly questioned, a sense of what is real begins to feel ephemeral, and we must ask ourselves, what really is true? Does 2+2=5? This act in itself feels unreal — not unlike the experience of watching an episode of ‘The Twilight Zone.’ As the edge between fact and fiction blurs, we become unmoored from an agreed reality and reach through the fog for something solid to hold onto.”

Rospenda’s work has been exhibited in exhibits around the country. He lives in South Bend, Indiana, where he is curator of exhibitions and collections at the South Bend Museum of Art. He has organized and overseen more than 70 exhibitions at the museum.

(Photo: “A Related Series of Events” — paper pulp)


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