Sara Luna at 35×35

Installation view of Artists of Utah’s 35×35 exhibition at Finch Lane Gallery, with a partial view of Sara Luna’s “No Time for Tradition,” and Matlyn Zundel’s “HB” in the background.

Sara Luna’s piece hanging above the fireplace at Finch Lane Gallery is a striking work that immediately pulls the viewer’s gaze down the gallery. A face is obscured by what looks like a painted graffiti tag. Closer inspection, however, reveals that both the portrait and the tag are created from woven textiles. Textiles are at the heart of the work of this Chilean artist, now working in Salt Lake City. From sourcing her wool to spinning it into yarn and finally weaving and stitching it into a finished piece, every step of the process is “a labor of love” for Luna.

In the artist’s words, “No Time for Tradition” is a commentary on “the struggle between modernity and ancestral wisdom, a visual narrative spun from the heart of Chilean heritage. Crafted with alpaca hand-spun yarn in combination with acrylic neon pink, this artwork is created using ancient methods passed down through generations, embodying the spirit of a people who have preserved their roots and knowledge. Through the intricate blend of natural and artificial, this piece becomes a tapestry of tradition, a thread that ties the past to the present.”

“The spray-paint tag is a symbol of modernity’s reckless disregard for the past,” the artist says. “This intentional act of vandalism reflects the disregard and disconnection of today’s youth, who find themselves caught in the fast-paced, ever-changing whirlwind of the digital age, where knowledge is readily accessible, but the wisdom of their elders remains a fading memory.”

Sara Luna “No Time for Tradition” 2023, weaving & cross stitch, 32 x 32 in.


Artists of Utah’s 35×35Finch Lane Gallery, Salt Lake City, through Feb. 23

Categories: 35x35

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  1. It’s impossible to say who should get the credit when a young artist moves up. For instance, Sara Luna was seen in (and mentioned in the reviews of) the Utah Arts & Museum’s Statewide Annual at Ogden Contemporary Arts and in the American Association of University Women’s show at Utah Cultural Celebration Center. Should we credit her for applying to those auspicious exhibitions or their jurors for accepting her wonderful textiles?
    Just kidding, of course. BOTH! And while we’re at it, let’s pat ourselves on the back, all of us who participate in the Utah arts community. Our collaboration brings an artist of Luna’s caliber, and so many likewise capable artists, to the attention of an audience that artists in other places can only wish for.

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