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Hannah Verlin at Simmons College

  • Trustman Art Gallery, 4th Floor 300 The Fenway Boston, MA 02115 United States (map)

Simmons College presents Remnants, a site-specific installation of sculpture by Hannah Verlin, from April 19-May 25 at the Trustman Art Gallery, located on the fourth floor, Main College Building, 300 The Fenway in Boston. A reception from 5-7 p.m. will be held on Thursday April 21, with an artist talk at 5:45 p.m. Closed May 20. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

Hannah Verlin’s Remnants, using spare materials, references New England’s connection to the sea. Using the height and light of the Trustman Art Gallery, her site-specific installation carries the weight of history via delicate form and obsessive markmaking. Verlin’s work and graceful installation only emphasizes how much interpolation we must do to identify with the past.

Verlin is aware of history, and how ephemeral the memory of it is. The ethereal nature of what remains either in the record or as a material object drives her project. The forms of and Red Whale: The Profits float overhead, their paper ribs covered with minute writing – more absence than presence – connoting the once grand whaling tradition of New England. The ships that battled the leviathans, the lives lost and fortunes made are all suggested by the combination of form and text. 

In A New World, Verlin uses simple old-fashioned bottles that appear to pour out blue string, puddling on the floor, arranging itself into words. Is it memory gone or saved? Her work asks questions about the past and our construction of narrative. Let Loose Upon the Seas conjures notes in bottles, gracefully hung in a bowl-like arc. But the bottles, full of tiny blue boats at the bottom of the arc, contain fewer and fewer boats as they rise to the ends. At the far reaches of the arc, there is only a single boat left in the bottle. These boats in bottles are the message, as calligraphic writing covers them. Her exquisite works beautifully suggest the dance between materiality and loss and the frail nature of the past. Verlin is a recipient of a Massachusetts Cultural Council award for installation and has served as an artist scholar-in-residence at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. 

Trustman Gallery hours are 10 a.m.- 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The gallery is free, open to the public and wheelchair accessible. For more information, contact Marcia Lomedico at 617-521-2268, or visit the Trustman Art Gallery website at and visit us on Facebook.