Jenna David Exhibition at Playhouse on the Square

Contact: Carrie Corbett
Director of College Communications

April 21, 2014


“Their Sap” by Jenna David

Jenna David Exhibition At Playhouse on the Square

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis College of Art announces the opening of Strand by Strand by Jenna David on April 30 at Playhouse on the Square, 66 S. Cooper St. The exhibition will continue on view through June 8. An opening reception will be held on Friday, May 2, 6–7:30 p.m. at Playhouse on the Square.

David received her MFA in Studio Arts from Memphis College of Art in 2013 and she is currently an instructor at Christian Brothers University and MCA, teaching Surface Design, Book Making and Art History. David’s work explores and reinterprets literature and storytelling with special attention to roles of villains and personas of evil. Her work looks at how such stories can and do address contemporary evils, blending fibers, printing and bookmaking to reevaluate the good vs. evil dichotomy.

“This series explores contamination by placing its toxic role into that of an adversary,” says David. “Such an evil/villain role continues to intrigue me in its necessity for bringing about light and truth, in advancing hope and redemption.” The imagery in Strand by Strand references “Of the Darkening of Valinor,” a story in J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion. “Strand by Strand visually translates the contamination of the Trees, once sources of light, sucked dry and withered by the venom of the antagonist spider Ungoliant,” says David. “With printing, dyeing and embroidery on fabrics and papers, the organisms lose their light and blacken. Hand stitching and free motion embroidery with red threads further magnify the dimming organs in their loss of life, giving an intense emotionalism that references a more contemporary and personal evil for me that is found in disease and dementia. The similarity of root tissue and cellular forms is deliberate, and the layers of fabric and paper mingling and blurring are intended. Notions of memory loss in my family ironically linger the longest.”

Playhouse’s MCA Gallery is open Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday from 1–5 p.m. and on show nights.

Photo: Jenna David, Their Sap, transfer print, free motion embroidery on cotton voile and organza

Memphis College of Art provides a rigorous curriculum in an intimate, diverse community to empower generations of leading artists, designers and educators to flourish professionally and contribute valuable ideas to society. The region’s only independent art and design college, MCA is fully accredited with expert, nationally renowned faculty and grants BFA, MFA, MA in Art Education and MA in Teaching degrees with graduates excelling in various careers across the country and internationally. For more information, visit Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @memphisart


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