A detail from Julie Peppito’s “Hybrid (After Nature by Jedediah Purdy),” from 2015, part of the exhibition opening Sept. 17 at the Florida Tech’s Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts. Image courtesy of the artist.


Finding the fabulous in the ordinary may be hard for most of us. But for artists, it’s a requirement. A new exhibition, TRANSFORMERS: RE-CONTEXTUALIZING OUR MATERIAL CULTURE, does just that.

Paintings, sculptures, films and tapestries form TRANSFORMERS, which opens Saturday, Sept. 17 and runs three months at Florida Institute of Technology’s Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts. In it, contemporary artists Jodie Mack, Garry Noland, Julie Peppito and Gerry Trilling transform “ordinary stuff” into works that resonate with fresh perspective.

Experimental animator JODIE MACK creates handmade films using recycled materials. Her intent is to “explore the relationship between graphic cinema and storytelling” and to “illuminate the elements shared between fine-art abstraction and mass-produced graphic design.” Born in London, Ms. Mack is currently the 2015-2016 Sony Music Fellow and associate professor of animation at Dartmouth College.

Here’s a video showing you a little bit of Ms. Mack’s work and process:

GARRY NOLAND uses materials such as PVC pipe, bubble wrap and duct tape to create collages. JULIE PEPPITO looks to discarded materials for her psychedelic collages, miniature quilts, botanical illustrations and works of Americana. The American Jewish diaspora informs conceptual artist GERRY TRILLING, whose parents escaped the Holocaust.

"Was.Is.Will" by Gerry Trilling. Constructed painting, mixed media (Brocade, printed fabric, constructed wooden stretchers) (3 panels) 60 x 24

“Was.Is.Will” by Gerry Trilling. Constructed painting, mixed media (Brocade, printed fabric, constructed wooden stretchers) (3 panels) 60 x 24

Two public gallery talks are scheduled. Garry Noland will talk at 6 p.m. Oct. 18. Gerry Trilling will talk 6 p.m. Nov. 15. Each talk is preceded by a reception beginning at 5:15 p.m. Admission is $10.

TRANSFORMERS is curated by contemporary artist China Marks. The exhibition RADIANT MESSENGER: DRAWINGS BY CHINA MARKS, will go on view Oct. 22 at Florida Tech’s Foosaner Art Museum.

The Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts is on the campus of Florida Institute of Technology, 150 W. University Blvd., Melbourne. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and noon to 4 p.m. Saturdays. Admission is free. Call 321-674-8313, click here or click onto their ad.