…LINES EXPLORING SPACE…
“…… a drawing simply is no longer a drawing, no matter how self-sufficient its execution may be. It is a symbol, and the more profoundly the imaginary lines of projection meet higher dimensions, the better.”
[Part of a series of artistbooks touring USA, UK, Canada, Egypt, Iceland, Australia & Japan]
Sumi Perera’s work invariably exploits her background as a doctor, scientist and artist, working in the East (Sri Lanka, her native country), and the West (the United Kingdom, her adoptive country). Slight variations on the theme generate ‘unique multiples’ in the form of artist books, blurring boundaries between the artist/artisan, orient/occident and the past and present. The process of making is as important as the ‘finished’ article, and often incorporates elements from various stages of the development of the artwork in the end product. She perceives books as time-based artworks that release a cascade of sensory responses with each page turn. The artwork often oscillates between the vertical and horizontal plane, liberating wall hung work to a publicly accessible space to be handled and touched-usually available as a democratic multiple, in bookform. Mixed media assemblage techniques combine hybrid printmaking techniques (lithography, kiln fired screenprint decals, etching, aquatint, drypoint, monoprint, chine-colle, collagraphs, mezzotint,) with stitch & cutouts. Often several narratives unfold within the hidden spaces of the book as a detachable or magnetic spine allows the book to be undressed. The editorial control is often transferred between author and reader by invitation to re-arrange the sequence of events/pages, by addition/subtraction, inscription/erasure.
Perera’s work is held in the Tate Britain; Victoria & Albert Museum; Yale Centre for British Art, USA; Guanlan Museum, China; Grafisk vaerksted-Naestved, Denmark; Sakima Art Museum, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan; printROOM, Rotterdam; Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery; the Ashmolean Museum Oxford; Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Permanent Art Collection, Egypt; Southern Cross University Collection, Australia; Centre for Artist Books, DCA, Dundee; Brooklyn Library, USA; ULUS Print Triennial Collection, Belgrade, Serbia; British Library.
She is a member of the Society of Painter-Printmakers (RE), Society of Designer Craftsmen (MSDC), Society of Graphic Fine Arts (SGFA) and 62 Group, an international textile artist group.