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Philadelphia artist Margery Amdur is known for her innovative use of cosmetic foam sponges to create large-scale abstractions. Using a variety of geometrically shaped sponges, Amdur cuts, arranges, and glues thousands on to an unstretched, asymmetrical canvas backing. She works intuitively as she composes the dense mass of sponges to create a patterned field of edges, shapes, and shadows. With sponges attached, the flexible, wall-mounted canvas is further manipulated to create undulating bulges and flowing crevices.

Typically, each sponge is also hand-painted. The applied paint, color, and sometimes glitter are an embellishment to the soft fibrous quality of the sponges no longer relegated to being simply a tool to apply makeup. Instead the transformed, amassed sponges create what appears to be an imagined, densely compacted urban landscape seen from an aerial perspective. Yet at the same time, many of the 3-dimensional elements appear to be jagged rocks, crystalline, and sometimes even lava like. Part architectural, part natural, Amdur’s compositions bridge these two realms.

To further underscore the patterns created by the 3-dimensional formations, Amdur seamlessly incorporates 2-dimensional prints, digital scans of the off-white, unpainted sponge constructions, within the overall composition. Using the computer she hand-draws black outlines atop the edges created by the scanned sponge constructions creating a graphic, 2-dimensional interpretation reminiscent of a topographical map.

Amdur’s installation is saturated with an accumulation and repetition of elements, patterns, and marks. The labor intensive quality is undeniable. Just like all urban environments and natural landscapes, the passage of time is ever present.

Margery Amdur has exhibited her work nationally and internationally and she has been awarded numerous artist-in-residencies and grants for her artistic excellence.

Visit margeryamdur.net.