On The Face Of It
Contemporary Art Quilt
71 1/2 x 102 1/2
...Sharon's large piece, On The Face Of It, which features seemingly uncountable human heads whose mouths part in every configuration, teases out subliminal messages just on the tips of the viewers' and the figures' tongues alike. Some viewers will recall a similar linguistic confusion around the ancient "brick" and "asphalt mortar" tower of Babel on the "plain...of Shinar" (Gen. 11:19), here newly quilted onto soft fabric canvases. These figures (with or without torso)---nostrils flared, mouths frozen in gaping exhortation, eyes snapped wide-open beneath arched eyebrows, squinted tightly, or fixed blankly over smiles and smirks---call out, demand, doubt, hope, inquire...stay slient
...In Kerry-Harlan's work, a style directly from the African Diaspora pervades, but her black-on copper color scheme establishes a consistently earthy tone that draws all the pieces toward the center away from ethnicity itself. Expecting spiritual revelation, I tried to mute the urgent cacophony of competing resolutions; yet, with stunning clarity, I heard what they are saying---all those messages encoded orally in this visual medium. Sharon Kerry-Harlan's work relishes these eye-to-ear transfers that leap from mind to heart.
---Richard O. Lewis, PH.D., Current Tendencies II