Dates: March 1st - 7th, 2016 VIP Vernissage: Tue, March 1st, 5-9pm Hours: Wed - Sun, March 2nd - 6th: 12-8pm Mon, March 7th: 12-6pm Location: Skylight at Moynihan Station (Main Post Office Entrance), 421 8th Ave, NY, NY RM 4032
In an age saturated with digital media and machine made artwork, the artists selected for this exhibition respond with a fresh approach to the hand-made object. Grounded in familiar territories such as craft, collage, sculpture, painting and design, these artworks are unified in their blending of history and tradition with post-internet sensibilities. A dominant theme of process with a diverse and expressionistic approach to material usage results in an awkward mashup, Art Brut made current with a vague reference to utility.
For instance, Jeff DeGolier’s absurdly exaggerated ‘furniture’ -- reminiscent of oversized chairs and living room speakers -- depict a contemporary approach to sculpture meets folk art. This idea is expanded upon in Chris Held’s Man Craft Lamps, those which are traditionally created from driftwood, he references now with melamine and corian -- an awkward combination of the rugged and the refined. MaDora Frey’s illuminated, wall mounted sculptures draw from design and utility, while reinterpreting nature with slick, crystalline forms. The carefully collaged photographs by Max Warsh achieve a similar aesthetic by combining the grid and architectural facades, bringing a handmade nod to today’s digital cut & paste culture.
Taken from his artist statement, the “Alien Primitivism” of Ben Pederson’s aesthetic calls to mind the mobiles of Alexander Calder, made incongruous and grotesque. This segues into the macabre, ornamental and brilliantly glazed ceramic sculptures of Jackson – splayed alien-cat heads morph into subversive meteors. The fantastically sublime creations of Elizabeth Ferry flaunt materiality with whimsy as innocuous plaster cast prayer hands have transformed themselves into googley eyed hand-shadow creatures.
Katie Bell’s wall mounted reliefs push so hard on the traditional boundaries of painting, that there seems to be critique at the core. Similarly engaged in the scrutiny of painting, though with a more humorous approach, works by Andy Cross feature a mashup of cliché portraiture and art historical subject matter. Also engaging the pictorial plane, the tapestries of Robin Kang combine ethnographic symbolism, computer related imagery, and digital mark making by way of interlocking threads. Taking another approach to this idea of referencing technological objects with unusual materials, Takashi Horisaki creates life size drooping cellular devices made from gloppy latex.
The artists in this exhibition use a hands-on approach to translate the noise, constant tweets, and general “information overload” that exists in our current universe. They pick and choose from the multiple and conflicting aesthetics to carve out a new voice that is loud, forceful, and totally out there.