Two less extravagant installations round out the show. In one corner, Bridget McAlonan weaves advanced calculus and lunar phases into an elliptical story of personal romance, while in another, six plates of color photographs have been cut into square inches and randomly reassembled by Seth Mullendore in eight-by-eight grids. Each tiny image contains recognizable facial flesh, but between the high magnification and low resolution, it's difficult to tell which part of the face is which. An eyelash or lower lip will stick out, forming touchstones to which the surrounding images form a sort of jigsaw. The plates make for an interesting photographic take on a Burroughs-like cut-up motif, adding a crudely recalled physicality and a jumbled nostalgia as subtext. In contrast to eroding processes of Hiltunen and Lipton, the personal nature of both Mullendore and McAlonan work reminds us that time also preserves, and that memory, like decay, is beholden to the artistic process.

Nicholas Schroeder can be reached

"IT'S A MATTER OF TIME" | works by Blake Hiltunen + Jessica Lauren Lipton + Seth Mullendore + Bridget McAlonan | Sylvia Kania Gallery, 566 Congress St., Portland | 207.615.6019

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