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‘To Love One Another’ (Day Labor)

Work by Molly Valetine Dierks

Sheila and Houston Hill Memorial Courtyard Gallery

‘To Love One Another (Day Labor)’ was designed and fashioned in rebar, then lovingly painted in a delicate rainbow gradient.

Materially, To Love One Another references the essential, but often invisible (or overlooked) labor systems—the supporting structure of any city or nation. The rainbow gradient & airiness draw inspiration from the stunning natural beauty of Texas landscapes, referencing sunsets, rainbows, sky, and dew…ecological systems as complex, delicate, and symbiotic as the diverse social systems that support a vibrant culture. The color palette also draws from the LGBTQIA+ movement, a vital social labor movement for rights that form the supporting core of any cohesive, progressive society.

To Love One Another (Day Labor) is titled after a letter penned from poet Rainer Maria Rilke to a friend, where he muses on the nature of love, noting: "There is scarcely anything more difficult than to love one another. That it is work, day labor...Day Labor, God knows there is no other word for it." (you

Artist Bio

Through immersive installations that draw equally from nature and technology, Molly Valentine Dierks explores evolving landscapes of intimacy, distance, and connection.

Dierks has participated in exhibitions nationally (Dallas, Detroit, LA) and internationally (Russia, South Korea); including exhibitions at the University of Michigan Museum of Modern Art, Kunsthalle Detroit Museum of Contemporary Art, and 500X Gallery in Dallas, Texas (among others). Select works have been featured in the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit’s 'Post Industrial Complex', CICA Museum’s Art Yellow Book, Designboom, Opumo Fashion Magazine, Voyage Dallas, The Jealous Curator, Peripheral Visions Arts, & more. Dierks’ public installations (Detroit, Minnesota, Dallas, Fort Worth) rely on the visual language of signs and mass-production to meditate on transitional states like vulnerability and evolution. Through ongoing research and residencies in China, Japan, Korea, the US, Iceland, and Finland, she explores different landscapes (material, psychological, ecological), translating the poetry of her experiences through her work.

Artist Statement

I draw inspiration from both the material language of industrial production, construction and consumption, coupled with the rhythms and patterns of the natural world. My research interests in technology, ecology, and psychology are complemented by an embodied approach to material study and experimentation in my studio. Through a process of disassembly and reconstruction, I examine material systems—the ways that the design, production and consumption of objects makes them a tangible expression of social and cultural expectation. By reconfiguring unlikely materials, I am on a quest…seeking to distill the formal and linguistic qualities of desire, conformity, and love.

My practice has grown to encompass works of public art… projects in public spaces that act as ‘anti-monuments’, memorializing fluid states of being like vulnerability, contemplation, evolution. Using the formal language of essential civic infrastructure (and commercial and regulatory signs and signifiers), these pieces mine the linguistic and material vocabulary of public monuments, focusing on the power of the collective over historically-favored narratives designed to elevate one person over others.

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