Glimmers of Grace Invitation

Glimmers of Grace
Grace Gray-Adams

October 2 26, 2023

Reception: Thursday, October 5, 4 - 7 pm, Art Gallery, FA103
Artist Talk:
Thursday, October 26, 5 - 6 pm, Art Gallery, FA103

Free Parking during these two events. Park in Faculty spaces in lot #1 ONLY.
If you have a Student permit you must park in Student spaces.
All our events are Free and open to the public.

"I create art to give voice to the soul within me. I exhibit art to shatter my own invisibilty and be heard."
          - Gray-Adams

Glimmers of Grace
is a brief survey of the artistic career of Grace Gray-Adams covering works produced from 1976 to the present. An art student at San Diego Mesa College from the first day it opened on Feburary 1964, we are honored to welcome Gray-Adams back with an exhibition that spans multiple themes. As many other older artists, Gray-Adams is grappling with her legacy and the final destination of her works, this is an opportunity for the San Diego audience to get familiar with her work. Centered on spirituality and the female body, Gray-Adams has created pieces such as an installation that exposes sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and a video celebrating the freedom and creativity of twelfth-century nun Hildegard of Bingen. Her artmaking process is guided by a fundamental desire to find ‘glimmers of grace’ in life.

An artist for five decades, Gray-Adams uses a feminist perspective to focus on issues that connect the roles of women and question the gendered, patriarchal norms of institutions such as marriage, motherhood and religion. She transferred to SDSU in 1967 as a junior, and focused on crafting ideas first, objects later. While studing art she also worked on the committee that established the first Women’s Studies Program in the country. Gray-Adams later trained in traditional figurative sculpture but evolved her work back into multimedia tableau-style installations and many of her projects have included an interactive or participatory element.

While producing her art, Gray-Adams was also being a wife and raising a family. Her now adult children recall their home filled with artworks in progress: full-size, beer can-adorned crosses, tampon quilts, yonis fashioned out of lint – “She was so cool and ahead of her time,” says her daughter Ursula, who has been involved in every aspect of this exhibition.

In her artwork Gray-Adams transforms elements that represent the tedium of domestic work, such as lint collected from the dryer, and imbues them with personal meaning. There are three works that upcycle this humble material, one of them being Proof: The Forensic Evidence of My Existence. Made up of hand-size lint sculptures that Gray-Adams created while taking care of her mother-in-law, these mini-soft forms are displayed on cases as if they were specimens in a laboratory. The viewer can sit and study samples of lint through a microscope. The process becomes a meditation on perception and awareness.

In addition, there are several video-based artworks that connects us with women’s experiences. The Wedding Sheet invites the audience into a bedroom setting where video clips have recorded stories hidden between the sheets and beautiufl lips tell the truth about their intimate wedding night. However, the soft sculpture of Entrails delves into a darker topic. This piece is dedicated to "the little girls" of Holy Spirit Parish who were abused by a priest. Black chiffon is braided into a rhizomatic structure that drapes from the ceiling; a Victorian Requiem representing crushed childhoods and embodying the psychic entrails these victims are forced to uncover while preparing their depositions. The organic root-like shape bulges out into nodes filled with shredded photographs of the children and relics of their religious paraphernalia.

Light and dark. Raw and real. Honest and unfiltered. These are the Glimmers of Grace.

Grace Gray-Adams received a B.A and M.F.A in Sculpture from SDSU and taught Art and Computer Graphics at MiraCosta, Grossmont, Southwestern and San Diego Mesa college for almost 25 years. She’s a member of the San Diego based FIG (Feminist Image Group). She’s shown her work at Fallen Trees Hotels/Motels (Unofficial Art Fair), Biola University, SDSU Gallery, Women’s Museum of California, Creative Arts Workshop, New York, among others.

For Gallery info call: (619) 388-2829                     
Gallery Director: Alessandra Moctezuma,
Gallery Coordinator: Jenny Armer,
San Diego Mesa College, 7250 Mesa College Dr., San Diego, CA 9211

Gallery Hours: M, T, W, TH 12 - 5 p.m. (Or by appointment.) Closed Fridays, Weekends & Holidays.

During regular gallery hours. Park in Student Spots, Parking Lot #1.  Purchase a ticket by the machines for $1 per hour oruse ParkMobileApp from a smart device.The campus code for Mesa College is 21003. 

For additional information, please visit: or contact the gallery at (619) 388-2829 during business hours.

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