Collage is a rush for me–from start to finish–an adventure, a happening. CHANCE is my muse. Chance has been a pervasive force in the sequence of my life as an artist, beginning with my unexpectedly intriguing involvement with Ray Johnson’s New York Correspondence School in the late 60’s through which I was introduced to the addictive magic of collage and collaboration.
What excites me about this medium are the ideas that flow from chance: the serendipitous discovery of “found” materials, the random (unconscious) selection process, the fortuitous mistakes, the bringing together of disparate pieces to begin the formation of order out of chaos. At a certain point when this “thing” starts to take shape, my brain kicks in to resolve what’s happening. I call this process “orchestrated chance”.
Through collage, I address the puzzle of life. My work reflects my playfully irreverent response to–or perhaps refuge from–the “furious folly” of these times. This can be seen in unexpected and nonsensical imagery, fifties iconography (my comfort years), deconstruction and humanization of machines, and in anthropomorphic hybrids. My work is my way of softening the world around me and making my peace with it.
Sherry Parker was first introduced to collage in New York in the late Sixties, where she was a player in Ray Johnson’s Correspondence School. She has been (actively) working in the collage medium since 1987. Her work has been exhibited in galleries in New York, Pasadena, Seattle, Santa Fe, Portland, San Francisco, Berkeley, and throughout Northern California.
In 2010, she originated, curated, and directed a year-long project “EXCOR, Revival of Exquisite Corpse”, which included 34 Northern California artists who collaboratively created 50 EXCORS. The following year, EXCOR was exhibited in Santa Rosa, Berkeley, and at SOMArts in San Francisco, an invitational called “Get Lucky, the Culture of Chance”. To document this revival, Parker wrote and published an 80-page limited edition book that features the history of Exquisite Corpse and the revival, and includes colour prints of all 50 EXCORS.
Parker spent her professional career in advertising and marketing. For two decades, she was in account management with J Walter Thompson, D’Arcy, and DDB Needham. In 1990, she founded Parker Jones Marketing Research, from which she retired in 2007 to pursue art full time.
Parker has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Occidental College in Los Angeles, and a graduate degree in French Literature from the Université de Lausanne, Switzerland.
Parker’s studio is in Santa Rosa, California.