Nathan Lewis, Assistant Curator of Exhibitions & Programs  

Katherine Mitchell DiRico: Data Sets

BEVERLY- Montserrat College of Art announces Data Sets, a solo exhibition by Katherine Mitchell DiRico. Data Sets presents a complex topography of information where areas of density are alternated with large expanses of empty space, only to be punctuated with small, complex vignettes. The surface of the large scale, multi-dimensional wall drawing, is built up of a broad range of diverse, yet related marks in a variety of materials: thread, pins, adhesives, pencil, and fishing line. It presents a vivid confluence of linear and sculptural elements where some lines are drawn with pencil, while types of string are used to form others. The metallic pins that puncture and guide these threads bring the drawing off the wall into a sculptural dimension. Small wooded fragments are playfully suspended between taught threads and make a visual reference to the four wooden pieces on the opposite wall.

The drawing’s geometric composition makes reference to the history of abstract painting as early 20th century works by Russian painters Malevich, Kandinsky, and El Lissitzky come to mind. It also provocatively evokes diagrams, graphs, architectural drawings, and contemporary data visualization practices. The title of the piece suggests that the drawing is a representation of abstract data points. Although there are clear correlations between various visual elements and repetitive patterns can be discerned, Data Sets is not didactic and does not actually translate existing data in a new form. Rather, this drawing is an improvisational, intuitive expression that suggests data visualization through aesthetic questioning, but does so without a specific data source or predetermined outcome.

At various intersections, dense visual clusters emerge as contrasting materials congregate to form a confluence of information and materiality. As their interconnectivity and complexity is highlighted, the looping circles connect them to form a distributed set of intuitive networks that spans across the length of the entire gallery wall. Aesthetics have become an instrumental tool in re-imagining networks, both how they look and how they function. Data Sets speaks to “net aesthetics” and complex network systems in a manner that invites multiple interpretations, associations and connections. As such, it stands as a rich exploration of information aesthetics and elegantly reflects the visual complexities of our time.                       

For more information about DiRico’s work, please visit:


Montserrat College of Art’s public programs are free of charge and open to the public. For more information contact: Nathan Lewis,

WHAT Katherine Mitchell DiRico: Data Sets

WHEN January 9–February 4, 2017

WHERE  Carol Schlosberg Alumni Gallery, 23 Essex St., Beverly, MA 01915


Katherine Mitchell DiRico, The Horizons of Our Distraction (detail)

Graphite, Thread, pins, privacy screen, and adhesive on wood

Katherine Mitchell DiRico, The Distractions of Our Horizon

Graphite, Thread, pins, privacy screen, and adhesive on wood

Katherine Mitchell DiRico, Ethics of Interruption, figure A

Graphite and adhesive on plastic

Katherine Mitchell DiRico, Ethics of Interruption, figure B

Graphite and adhesive on plastic

Using Format