May 6, 2004
Lorinda Knight Gallery, Spokane, WA

Under the Rug

From the tribal cultures of western Mongolia to mid-1970s suburbia, rugs have always had a place as inanimate but nevertheless significant members of the family. Whether as silent, orange shag witnesses to squabbles over the TV, or as handy places to stash that which one is too lazy to vacuum or pick up, rugs quietly keep our secrets and observe the unfoldings of our lives.

Although there is nothing in Gail Grinnell's new show at thc Lorinda Knight Gallery to suggest deep acrylic pile or fancy Oriental patternwork, the exhibit is entitled "Rug Drawings" and is inspired by thc artist's exploration of her own family history. Using graphite on translucent paper and hard plywood, Grinnell evokes the enduring tenacity of knots, the hard work inherent in such household tasks as hanging laundry. Seen through the coolly dispassionate lens of contemporary art, Grinnell's curiosity about her own past emerges as both gentle and uncompromising, domestic yet quietly distanced.

— Sheri Boggs