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Allston artist uses parking tickets to create skyline scenes of Boston, Cambridge

Posted by Matt Rocheleau  July 1, 2013 02:04 PM

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(Ruth Rieffanaugh / Unbound Visual Arts)

They often hide, tucked under a windshield wiper blade, cruelly waiting to show themselves as that poor driver approaches. The mere sight of those bright orange envelopes is enough to ruin the day for many.

But an artist from Allston hopes people will be able to find some beauty in Boston parking tickets.

Ruth Rieffanaugh has used parking tickets – some her own and others she found discarded on the street – to create colorful skyline scenes of Boston and Cambridge.

An exhibit of her work, called "Parking Ticket Blues & Other Rediscovered Uses" will debut at the Massachusetts State House on July 10, according to Unbound Visual Arts, Inc., a nonprofit that is sponsoring the exhibit. A public opening reception is scheduled from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

The exhibit, which includes other art she has created using discarded newspapers and other paper materials, will run through July 31, open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Room 34 of the State House.

"After moving to Boston, the artist started receiving several parking tickets and she also found many parking tickets discarded on the streets," said a statement from the sponsoring organization, which Rieffanaugh is a founding member of. "In order to capture her feelings and emotions in her new city, she decided to use the tickets to create things of beauty."

"The parking ticket art as well as her other artwork are about ideas and for Ruth those ideas emerge as enigmatic imagery," the statement added. "Drawn from personal experiences, the work grapples with the very personal yet universally personal – that nameless realm of feelings that blend the passionate and pleasurable, the angst and anguish, the uncertain and unsettled – often evoking a moment in time, a meaningful place, a despairing loss or a sudden discovery."

Rieffanaugh lives in Allston where she also works in her art studio. She also works as the director of the Dorchester Alternative Youth Academy and teaches drawing at Boston Architectural College. She received a masters in art education from Lesley University and a bachelor's in fine arts from the Art Institute of Boston.

"As a group, her paintings reveal uncertainty and barriers for the mind. She challenges the mind to confront those limitations and she presents us with the concepts that 'change is constant' and life 'is what it is.'"

E-mail Matt Rocheleau at mjrochele@gmail.com.
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parkingticketsboston2.jpg

(Ruth Rieffanaugh / Unbound Visual Arts)

parkingticketsboston3.jpg

(Ruth Rieffanaugh / Unbound Visual Arts)

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