Granary Arts Sandy Brunvand Positive Space of Silence

SANDY BRUNVAND / Positive Space of Silence

February 10 – May 13, 2016


This body of work focuses on marks and the potential they hold to both encode and decode information.  In this case the marks inherent in the player piano scrolls used as a substrate are negative marks. The negative space holes and trails in the paper hold the information about the music encoded on the scroll. They are, in a sense, the meaning of the scroll. In addition, the paper of the scrolls is visually stunning by itself.  With its patina of age, and the accompanying tone and fragile texture, it is reminiscent of skin, of parchment, relaying information, holding information, and hiding information.  Within this medium, and the marks encoded on it, the scrolls become a platform for a new transformation, visually as well as conceptually. 


Header image: Old Silence, New Code, Sandy Brunvand


In this work I directly reference the negative space of a player piano scroll; the holes that create sound when played. The negative space creates a mark that travels across the page, as does the sound in the original scroll.  To this I add layers of history and movement of my own travels. I do this through the addition of layers of gesso and added marks on the scrolls, including additional shapes implied by the negative space, and additional fiber paper “sound” marks. The use of the piano scroll also symbolizes the suppression of sound or voice and silently underscores a need for hope and renewal.


About the Artist

Born in Michigan, Sandy Brunvand moved to Salt Lake City in 1982.  Sandy is an Assistant Professor (Lecturer) in art education in the Department of Art and Art History, University of Utah. After receiving her MFA in 2003, she co-founded Saltgrass Printmakers, a non-profit printmaking studio and gallery located in Sugarhouse.  As well as teaching studio and art education courses, at the U of U, Brunvand has also developed and taught a variety of professional development workshops for K-12 educators. These workshops have been delivered for the University of Utah, Salt Lake Art Center (Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, UMOCA), Jordan School District, Salt lake School District, Granite School District, and Art Works For Kids.

Brunvand’s artwork incorporates painting, drawing, printmaking, and mixed media. Her work has shown throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, England, New Zealand, Hong Kong, China, Colombia, Palestine, Hungary, and Scotland.  Commissions include:  Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Salt Lake Art Center (UMOCA), and Utah Arts Council.  Grants include Utah Arts Council Established Artist Grant, multiple grants from Art Works for Kids, and the University of Utah Graduate research fellowship.  Brunvand was recently named one of Utah’s 15 most influential artists, voted on by Utah’s on-line arts magazine, Artists of Utah-15BYTES. 

As well as making, teaching and viewing art Brunvand also has a passion for playing blues and bluegrass music and hiking in the mountains with her husband Erik, and dog, Oliver.   Sandy Brunvand has been a member of Artnauts since 2013.