Heloisa Pomfret – “Threshold”

Heloisa Pomfret

Apr. 13 – Jun. 30, 2018
Main Gallery

Exhibition Statement
“The philosophy of my work is about the energy, order and chaos that occurs during psychological or physical stress, which serve as theoretical support to the mark-making and constructs of my images. The surface is often an analogy to the body and memory, in which experience occurs and is transformed. The visual elements of the brain, along with its scientific charting and diagrams, serve as inspiration and a starting point of abstraction for paintings/drawings and installations, in both traditional and non-traditional materials.

My paintings on canvas and on paper involve the palimpsest process, where layers of paint are scratched to reveal further paint beneath. The canvas is cut and re-stitched, creating an abstract work on the margins of painting/drawing and sculpture. The use of stitches and sutures suggests mending, healing and the installation of cut-outs suggests elements of the brain that regulate human emotion. These processes are analogies to the searching of memory, mapping and charting.

As part of the exploration of the ideas around the emotional impulses of fright and flight, passion and aggression, this exhibition considers the limits where a transformation or change occurs—or the concept of “threshold”. Threshold is the limit or point at which something begins to shift or the point where saturation is reached.

A threshold could be a point where an image or subject can be transformed by manipulation of color and texture, and therefore a change in its visual identity is reached. The threshold can also involve imposing or testing physical, chemical, architectural or psychological limits.

Within this Exhibit, a threshold involves the consideration of scientific images developed in the search for truth. This includes images of components of the brain, grids and graphs used to chart impulses, brain waves and similar activity. These charts, scans and scientific representations of the brain are re-contextualized, through color and texture, and translated into different medium and materials.

This threshold—between poetic abstraction and scientific representation—is summarized in the following quote:

‘A poem is that species of composition which is opposed to works of science, by proposing for its immediate object pleasure, not truth….’ — Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Biographia Literaria, 1817

The intention of this Exhibition, is to explore this transformation—this Threshold—first, from the idea of an impulse to scientific representation and measurement, and second, from scientific representation back to abstracted mark-making, color, texture and re-purposed and re-constructed materials.”

– Heloisa Pomfret

“Threshold”, features paintings on canvas and installations by Brazilian American visual artist Heloisa Pomfret. The exhibition includes “Maps”, an installation of over 250 images cut from truck tire inner tubes. Also presented will be works of oil on canvas from the Threshold series, where the canvasses are often cut and re-stitched, and the paint scratched with metal blades.

Heloisa was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and earned a Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts in painting and drawing at Wayne State University in Detroit. She has exhibited her inter-disciplinary work at various museums and international exhibitions, including in Sao Paulo Brazil. –

The exhibition will be on display at the N’Namdi Center from April 14, 2018 through June 30, 2018.
An artist talk will take place on Saturday, April 28 at 2:00pm with Sarah Rose Sharp.

The N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art presents diverse, multi-disciplinary and engaging art experiences. It serves to promote and perpetuate the cultural legacy of African-American and African diasporic art, along with art from diverse cultures. Since its conception in 2010, the N’Namdi Center has contributed to the Detroit arts scene by presenting art exhibitions by nationally and internationally renowned artists as well as local and emerging talent.

The N’Namdi Center’s work is based on two core beliefs: that the arts can play an integral role in the revitalization of Detroit, and that a thriving creative community depends upon the participation of a diverse group of artists, organizations and individuals. The N’Namdi Center builds on these beliefs by acting as a catalyst in the development of Detroit’s creative ecosystem, with a continuing focus on African American art and community engagement through the arts.