The Archive | See Also 2023

Close-up of flowers suspended from the ceiling

Exhibit Hours: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. (Monday – Saturday)

Main Library, Brett Hall | 325 Superior Avenue

ABOUT THE ARCHIVE

Rebecca Louise Law describes The Archive

Experience an immersive art installation by world-renowned artist Rebecca Louise Law. Law’s artworks are created by preserving natural materials and reconfiguring them into otherworldly designs. Her most well-recognized artworks are comprised of thousands of flowers, individually sewn and suspended. Viewers are invited to navigate through them, discovering the diverse forms, colors, and textures of each specimen.

The Archive is comprised of over 500,000 botanical objects, including flowers, pinecones, seed pods, and other items. Over 50,000 of these were donated by local businesses and individuals from Northeast Ohio. The others are repurposed from past projects that took place in Chicago, Illinois, and Jacksonville, Florida. These natural materials are suspended from an 18-foot-tall timber frame constructed of Douglas Fir beams, filling nearly 44,000 cubic feet of space within the Library’s historic Brett Hall. 

Each object was strung on copper wire by a community of volunteers before being shaped into the installation by the artist.

Visitors are encouraged to enter this immersive installation and consider our human connection to nature and the role we play in shaping the world we live in.

Cleveland Public Library seeks to create a welcoming and inviting environment for all visitors. While we encourage people to enjoy and photograph their experiences visiting The Archive, no professional photography equipment is allowed in Brett Hall including but not limited to tripods, lights, or risers that can interfere with others’ enjoyment of the exhibit.

Individuals taking photos of the exhibit using their own personal cameras for their own use may do so as long as they are not disrupting the viewing experiences of others.

MAKING THE ARCHIVE

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Rebecca Louise Law (British b.1980) is known for creating immersive installations with natural materials. Preserved flowers have become the signature of her most recognized works. Her work explores the complexity of our human connection to nature with the intent to help inspire a deeper appreciation for it.

Since 2003, Law has been collecting flowers to build her projects. These colossal works are intentionally equivocal and while themes of symbolism, consumerism, sustainability, and life cycles often present themselves, the artworks also provide a harmonious sense of place for rest and contemplation. Today, Law uses flowers grown and dried in a small family-run holding in France as well as grows, harvests, and dries her own flowers in the UK. To instill a sense of place, all new installations have local contributions. With permission, locally sourced flowers are donated from parks, private collections, gardens, and commercial waste. Waste from the commercial floral industry needs to be sorted and dried, with many stems composted.

Website: rebeccalouiselaw.com

ABOUT SEE ALSO

See Also is derived from a library cataloging term for “look here.” The program brings innovative and thought-provoking temporary works of art each summer to Cleveland Public Library. The artwork complements the library’s broad range of cultural programming.

PARTNERS & SPONSORS

This project is made possible through the support of Cleveland Public Library’s Lockwood Thompson Endowment Fund, LAND studio, mercer-WORKS, and a community of volunteers.

LAND studio

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