The twenty-eighth tabletop happening of 5×7 UNDERGROUND occurred on Friday, January 14th, 2022 from 5-7 p.m. “Fracture(d)” was the theme and chosen by member, Lauren Latané-Valis.

The twenty-eighth 5×7 Underground met at Pipe the Side Brewing Company in Hampstead, MD. For most of us, this was our first time at Pipe the Side and were impressed and understood why Lauren is a regular here. Great atmosphere, warm vinyl and cold craft-brewed beer.

Artists in attendance included: Jeff Sharp, Mary Beth Francis, Jim Roberts, Lauren Latané-Valis and Thomas Sterner.

Each artist presented their interpretation of Fracture(d) beginning with Lauren Latané-Valis. After each 5×7 UNDERGROUND artist presented their work in rotation, the work was displayed for a gallery photograph.

Art from 5×7 UNDERGROUND 28th tabletop happening.
Lauren Latané-Valis, “Stress Fracture”, 2022, linoleum block, acrylic paint, paper, 5in x 7in.

A stress fracture is a tiny crack caused by repetitive force. I made a lino cut of abstracted bones which I then repeatedly printed over layers of acrylic paint and torn paper. The parts of this work were created at two different times during the day in order to explore how the timing of outside stressors impact my mood.

Thomas Sterner, “Fractal Canopy”, 2022, welded stainless steel, 9in x 9in x 6in.

A fractal canopy is a simple fractal, created by splitting a line segment into two smaller segments, then splitting the two smaller segments as well, and so on, infinitely. Canopies are distinguished by the angle between concurrent adjacent segments and the ratio between lengths of successive segments.
A fractal canopy has 3 properties:

  1. the angle between neighboring line segments is the same throughout the fractal
  2. the ratio of lengths of consecutive line segments is constant
  3. all lines are connected
    Examples of fractal canopies are: the human pulmonary system, trees, blood vessels, electrical breakdown and crystals.

This welded stainless steel sculpture depicts a tree and its the branches using the fractal canopy rules.

Mary Beth Francis, “Hugging Humanity”, 2022, mixed, 3.5in x 3.5in x 3.5in.

In a fractured society, where people seem to wear their worst like weapons– either to attack out of hatred or defend out of necessity, it is hard, it hurts to reach out in love, for progress, peace, and equity.

Mary Beth Francis, “The Great Rift”, 2022, paper, mixed, 3.5in x 5in x 1in.

Faults in the earth’s core, and the movement of plates over millions of years, under pressure heave the earth together into mountains, force plates to slide under one another, and pull apart into gaping scars. The Great Rift Valley extends from Lebanon to Mozambique and sits on a divergent fault, with two plates moving apart.
Faults in the core of humanity have continue to cause upheaval, division, and scarring shifts in the social landscape in just a short time. Now is the time for building and rebuilding bridges, climbing and crossing and traversing.

Jeff Sharp, “Sometimes, We are Broken”, 2022, sea glass, photocopy, aluminum foil, LED, 5in x 5in x 1.5in.

Twenty first century pandemic life leaves one feeling languished and fractured. Pulling the pieces back together can make something unexpected and beautiful. Don’t underestimate the importance of community and involvement.

Jim Roberts, “polarizing”, 2022, mixed-welded steel, manipulated image, shellac, 7.75in x 6.5in x 3.5in.

Wayne LaPierre has been the NRA’s Executive Vice President (EVP) for over 30 years. Largely under his leadership, the NRA was transformed from a gun-safety organization into a political machine that has influenced laws and elections that have often favored gun-rights ownership and use at the expense of the health and safety of the American people.