Opening Reception // Jennifer Lefort & Andrew Casto Saturday, March 11th

Join us for the Opening Reception of Jennifer Lefort‘s Whenever Forever and Andrew Casto‘s Revelatory Dérive. This will be the inaugural solo exhibition for both artists, and Andrew Casto will be in attendance at the opening.

Opening Reception, Saturday, March 11th from 6–9pm
Artist Andrew Casto in attendance

Exhibition on view through May 14th

Renowned Canadian painter and curator Leopold Plotek writes: “Jennifer Lefort’s canvases bring to mind the words of the distinguished poet Def Jef: ‘God made ’em funky!’ She is an artist whose work nearly grazes the form and spirit of popular media, and her colour would be inconceivable prior to the arrival of digital media or at the very least colour television. Saturated, electrified, her fields and often wiggy goings-on across them are finally pictorial, but not so much by things they represent (what are they, anyway?), as by pretending to creep, ooze, thump, pulse or pullulate; and all performed in rampant, chemical, often complementary hues. Her canvases present a striking contrast in luminosity and colour-temperature, and show how radically ground-colours can determine our perception of pictorial space.”

Jennifer Lefort // Without Conformity 2016, 84 x 60 inches, oil and spray paint on canvas

Jennifer Lefort // Without Conformity
2016, 84 x 60 inches, oil and spray paint on canvas

Of his own work, Andrew Casto says, “My current body of work involves an investigation into dialogues concerning extant negative forces in our lives, and to what degree the phenomenological ramifications of responsibilities and stress shape us physically, mentally, and emotionally. The formal language present in this analysis is based on a material study of erosion and geological processes translated into ceramic and mixed media objects. I seek a purposeful link between macrocosmic environmental change, and interruptions in our otherwise routine existence. Within this inquiry, alternative and diverse construction methods are emphasized as tools of fresh, genuine expression in the creation of dynamic assemblages of great fragility. The foundation of this exploration is a desire to uncover the sublime in these moments of incongruity; the rush of presence into experience that might otherwise remain banal and ordinary, brought on by perceived inconvenience. My work asserts that it is possible for our daily vexations to illuminate the power of the present moment–something we all too often fail to notice.”

Andrew Casto // Assemblage 80 2015, 5 x 7 x 11 inches, ceramic, luster

Andrew Casto // Assemblage 80
2015, 5 x 7 x 11 inches, ceramic, luster

Dominique Labauvie Art LTD Critics Choice

“Material Culture,” 2016, Dominique Labauvie, Pastel and charcoal on Stonehenge paper, 50″ x 42″

“Material Culture,” 2016, Dominique Labauvie, Pastel and charcoal on Stonehenge paper, 50″ x 42″

 

Precise, stark, and often clinical in their approach, French-born, Miami-based sculptor and painter Dominique Labauvie’s pieces have an unexpected source of inspiration. Drawing from natural rock and landscape formations, Labauvie distills form and line to its most refined iteration. Stripping them of all their frivolity, he lays bare the essentials. His first solo show in over a year promises new sculptures and drawings of the same ilk. Emphasizing nature as coherent rather than random, his forms are evoke a graphic simplicity. Labauvie primarily employs industrial materials in his practice, signaling a parallelism between the natural and modern worlds. The composition conflates an organic abstraction with a natural one, leading its viewers to consider the relation between art, or culture, and nature. From large-scale, three-dimensional work, his drawings boil down his formal elements even further. His new work often features flurries of color, but have the same laser-like focus on reducing shape and line to the barest essentials. Dominique Labauvie’s new work will be on view at Mindy Solomon Gallery, from January 21 – March 4, 2017.

You can view Labauvie’s work beyond “Material Catch” in his first Spotlight exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts, organized by Curator of Contemporary Art Katherine Pill, In St. Petersburg Florida.

Dominique Labauvie and Michael Conrads // Opening Reception January 21st

Material Catch // Dominique Labauvie
Celebrating Opposites // The Work of Michael Conrads
Opening Reception // Saturday, January 21st from 6-9pm
Exhibition on View through March 4th, 2017

“The line informs us about the absent forms, as only the missing remain in our memories, our books, and in our images. The line attests to the desire of thought.” -Dominique Labauvie

Dominique Labauvie // The Third Eye 2016 50 x 42 inches Pastel and Charcoal on Stonehenge paper

Dominique Labauvie // The Third Eye
2016
50 x 42 inches
Pastel and Charcoal on Stonehenge paper

Dominique Labauvie’s newest body of work is a series of sculptures and drawings focused upon ruin as subject, a theme often addressed in art history, and weighing heavily in Labauvie’s thinking as ever-present in our society by way of environmental damage, cultural destruction, government, and concern for the future. In Labauvie’s view, material culture—the remains of what once was—is material evidence which aids in understanding the past.

Through his sculptures, the artist translates the concept of ruin as the reduction of form to its minimum, the line of the funambule (French for tightrope walker), and sculpts in metal as a mark in space. The sculptures are fabricated using small segments of forged steel, welded, as marks on paper would be joined in drawing.

“The ground—any ground: earth, wood, or stone—hosts the forged lines, just as the landscape that for centuries has been mapped by rivers, roads, and highways. Drawing engraves the style of my sculpture. Drawing is one of the mental references of the sculpture, and in a sense it is a form of partnership.

“My sculpture not only addresses the line as a record to ‘transport time into space,’ but it also manipulates the material nature of steel. Steel is actually not natural but a man-made material, with the exception of the iron meteorite that falls from the cosmos onto earth. From the mineral to the industrial product, we can say that steel is a pure product of human inventiveness and work. As Valery wrote in 1937, ‘What would we be without steel?’

Dominique Labauvie // Cloud Nine 2016, 95 X 43 X 20 inches, forged steel

Dominique Labauvie // Cloud Nine
2016, 95 X 43 X 20 inches, forged steel

 

“The floor of the studio where I work is a surface on which I move. The segments of the sculpture are laid out, unconnected and moving all the time without a predetermined direction, as in a drawing. As I work, the image appears and disappears—creating a kind of high and low tide of perception. The line and its speed, its texture, tension, or extension is found well within the nature of the steel; it constructs the different rhythms of its presence and names them. When a line bends, it slows down; as it expands, it suddenly appears as a flat surface: it carves out its presence in space like a black hole.”

Labauvie’s sculptures are intended as a physical homage to the strength of survival. The Arrival is the last sculpture of this series, “a declaration of victory and love,” which makes a historic nod to the famous Birth of Venus by Botticelli.

Michael Conrads // Door of Janus I (Magna Oscura)  2017 84 x 60 inches various fabrics, gesso, acrylic, graphite, spray paint, oil, and pigment on canvas

Michael Conrads // Door of Janus I (Magna Oscura)
2017
84 x 60 inches
various fabrics, gesso, acrylic, graphite, spray paint, oil, and pigment on canvas

Mindy Solomon is proud to introduce, for his first Miami solo exhibition, the work of Michael Conrads. Currently an artist in residence at the Fountainhead in Miami, Conrads hails from Germany.

Conrads believes good painting is a manifestation of the artist’s emotional and intellectual sensibilities realized on canvas. Ultimately, achieving a visual epiphany and the fulfillment of an aesthetic journey is the final goal.

“Before I start a painting, I usually have a composition in mind, which I develop through a series of small-scale drawings. These are drawn onto a specially modified grid, which enables me to shift between dimensions of space—from plain top view to isometric perspective to multilayered, multidimensional space-and-time tables. I use the grid as a tool to construct the illusion of depth, and to create contradictory perspectives that change while gazing at the picture. The perspectives can be quite complex at times, while others are merely repetitive and pattern-like, which can lead to ultra-dense, self-consuming structures. The magic happens (or doesn’t) in the transformation from a graphic drawing to painting.”

Utilizing a variety of media, from acrylics to oil, spray color, pigment, shellac, bitumen, and pastel, Conrads’s process is the materialization of painting. His process of art-making constructed to analyze how painting works. The parameters of a painting contain many contradictions: light and dark, dense and loose, quickly drawn and elaborately articulated, dynamic and static, colorful and monochromatic. Conrads believes all of these actions are valid. It is the utilization and implementation that create perfect compositional balance.

Conrads states: “Finding balance is usually the hardest part. It all comes down to what happens on the canvas. As much as planning or drawing may help to prepare for a painting, there are no shortcuts. A former exhibition title of mine comes to mind: No paint no gain. Lately, I have rather been looking for simplicity than complexity. It makes the work quieter and more dynamic at the same time, and helps me to focus on certain aspects of painting. Recent works include paintings that only consist of various types of pre-primed white canvases put together in spatial compositions, consisting of a minimum of painterly gestures. This minimal approach makes traces of the work or mistakes a lot more obvious. As the white cube, which only exists in theory—and can, in reality—never be perfected.

“But not all paintings are that minimal, and luckily, I am still fascinated by color. My paintings are about perception. They give me intellectual stimulation. I don’t want to explain anything in my work or to be identified with a particular name or a genre. There is no overlying concept. Showing the process of painting is important, but not my final goal. I guess it is important because painting is what I love to do. In that sense, a painting is no more than the sum of all the single actions that I did to it until it’s done. And sometimes that’s a lot.”

Einar & Jamex de la Torre & Generic Art Solutions // Opening Reception November 28th

Exhibit: The Flaunting of Youth // Einar and Jamex de la Torre
Project Space: Raw Horse Power // Generic Art Solutions
Opening Reception Monday, November 28th 6–9pm
Exhibition on View through January 14th, 2017

Mindy Solomon Gallery presents The Flaunting of Youth by Einar and Jamex de la Torre and Raw Horse Power by Generic Art Solutions (G.A.S.) on view November 28th, 2016 through January 14th, 2017 at the gallery: 8397 NE 2nd Avenue, Miami, in Little River. An opening reception with the artists will take place Monday, November 28th, from 6–9pm.

mezcal-bothThe opening reception party features Tres Papalote—a unique boutique mezcal created by Mexican American actor and famed Chicano art collector Cheech Marin. The Tres Papalote® label showcases an image of a glass sculpture skillfully crafted by artists Einar and Jamex de la Torre. The figurine on the bottle is inspired by the de la Torres’ colorful fun-loving work in Cheech’s own art collection.

// Join the Facebook Event for updates //

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Einar and Jamex de la Torre // Work Ethics 2016, 68.25 x 50.25 x 3 inches, lenticular print in LED lightbox

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Generic Art Solutions // Meatheads: Self Portraits  2016, 33 x 48.5 inches, archival inkjet on Silver Rag paper

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Generic Art Solutions // Streetfighter: Ninjas 2016, video still

Einar and Jamex de la Torre // DismexB 2016, 34 x 85 inches, Diptych

Einar and Jamex de la Torre // Borderlandia
2016, 82.25 x 32 x 3 inches, lenticular print in LED lightbox (diptych)

Taste my braindrops Opens Sunday, October 30th

“Taste my braindrops” welcomes ten artists of exceptional talent to the gallery:

Catherine Czacki
Katy Fischer
Heather Guertin
Alan Gutierrez
Mark Hagen
Dominique Labauvie
Sarah Peters
Josh Reames
Brian Rochefort
Guy Yanai

// Opening Reception, Sunday, October 30th from 4-6pm
// Read more about the artists here.
// Stay up to date with our Facebook Event.

Mark Hagen // To Be Titled (Subtractive Sculpture on Additive and Subtractive Gradient Painting #3) 2014, 35.5 x 17.5 inches, volcanic glass on titanium etched and anodized with Coke Zero, in titanium frame anodized with Coke Zero

Mark Hagen // To Be Titled
(Subtractive Sculpture on Additive and Subtractive Gradient Painting #3)
2014, 35.5 x 17.5 inches, volcanic glass on titanium etched and
anodized with Coke Zero, in titanium frame anodized with Coke Zero

Josh Reames // $10 2016, 50 x 60 inches, acrylic on canvas

Josh Reames // $10
2016, 50 x 60 inches, acrylic on canvas

Sarah Peters // Head of a Boy Vessel 2013, 8 x 6 x 10 inches, bronze

Sarah Peters // Head of a Boy Vessel
2013, 8 x 6 x 10 inches, bronze

Schemes & Ghost Hands Opens September 24

Mindy Solomon Gallery presents Schemes by Ernesto Garcia Sanchez, and Ghost Hands by Linda Lopez in the gallery’s Project Space. Linda Lopez’s ceramics and Ernesto Garcia Sanchez’s paintings bring new life and energy to traditional media. Exploration, investigation, and spontaneity are the hallmarks of their individual practices.

Linda Lopez // Untitled 2016, 27 x 22 1/2 x 58 inches, Ceramic, ink, and gouache on paper, frame, cotton gloves, and custom XyZ Coop rug

Linda Lopez // Untitled
2016, 27 x 22 1/2 x 58 inches,
Ceramic, ink, and gouache on paper, frame, cotton gloves, and custom XyZ Coop rug

Ghost Hands explores the persistent presence of the absent. These pieces search for the unseen thread that connects people and things that once shared an intangible moment. In this realm, logic is lost, objects are personified, perception is ever-changing, and things become their true selves. Linda Lopez is a child of two ethnicities—Vietnamese and Mexican. In her current exhibition, she incorporates rugs made by artisans in Mexico with her sculptural pieces that form bridges between historic memory and new beginnings. Each work showcases the alternative existence of objects.

Ernesto Garcia Sanchez // Untitled Nr. 3 2016, 25 x 49 inches, Acrylic and graphite on wood

Ernesto Garcia Sanchez // Untitled Nr. 3
2016, 25 x 49 inches, Acrylic and graphite on wood

In Schemes, his second exhibition at Mindy Solomon Gallery, Ernesto Garcia Sanchez (Havana, Cuba) continues to explore the possibilities of line and textured surface. Sanchez was among the artists chosen to present work in the 2015 Havana Biennial—the first since US restoration of diplomatic relations with Cuba. The artist’s work takes on a performative angle; through the process of controlling his drawing and painting using one side of his device, in this way he allows the other side to move freely, reflecting the subconscious act of painting.*

*Referenced from the Cuban Art Tours website

//  READ MORE ABOUT THIS EXHIBITION <<

Ocean Drive Features BFA Graduate Exhibition

“Introduction to the Real World 101” is how Mindy Solomon describes the upcoming select BFA graduate exhibition hosted in the gallery. Solomon serves as student-artist proxy, offering mentorship and leadership to emerging artists as they prepare to enter the greater field. This year’s show, curated by Eddie Negron, features six recent BFA graduates from downtown Miami’s New World School of the Arts: Ani Gonzalez, Joshua Veasey, Elizabeth Newberry, Richard Sanchez, German Caceres, and Jessica Martin. Catch a sneak peek of their work below, and stay tuned for more from these talents in  A Mass on Foreign Ground, on view August 20-September 17, 2016 at the gallery. Read more in the feature in Ocean DriveCatch a Rising Star.

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Elizabeth New

Elizabeth New

Richard Spit

Richard Spit

Joshua Veasey

Joshua Veasey

Jessica Martin

Jessica Martin

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Richard M. Sanchez

Mindy Solomon Gallery to host ScreenDance Miami // January 23rd @ 7 & 9 pm

SCREEN DANCE LOGOWe are thrilled to host an evening of this year’s ScreenDance Miami!  Watch the trailer here.

ScreenDance Miami is a Tigertail-produced festival that takes place the end of each January at various venues. It offers skill-developing workshops, panel discussions and screenings. ScreenDance Miami highlights national, international and Miami-based choreographers and filmmakers who are working with emerging and new concepts in regard to movement and dance on film and dance on camera. The festival was created to support professionals in this field and the development of dance created for the camera. ScreenDance Miami seeks to engage the public and bring to light this adventuresome form. For the second year in a row, Tigertail is partnering with the internationally acclaimed Cinedans of the Netherlands.

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January 23, Mindy Solomon Gallery, 7:00 & 9:00pm (identical programs)

• TWITCH, 2015, 5 minutes, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Director Jules de Niverville, Choreographer Michael Watts
TWITCH is a five-minute experimental performance video incorporating contemporary dance, contortion and acrobatics. It chronicles the life-pulse of a creature in conflict, its stirrings, twitching, and convulsions, its agonizing missteps and battle with demons. It’s an ode to overcoming dark energies that lie within the embodiment of conflicting energy.

• Helena, 2015, 3:50, Los Angeles, CA
Director and Choreographer Nadav Heyman
Solo performance in the wake of a stream of consciousness. “Sleep is not democracy and it is not a mantra. It is neither plastic nor glass. It cannot break. It cannot burn. It cannot pollute. Sleep is salty and at times sweet.”

• When the Time Is Right, 2015, 5:58, Tallahassee, FL
Director Jennifer Petuch, Choreographers Jennifer Petuch and Ircamar Garcia
Reflecting nature we witness profound life-change through personal metamorphosis. When the Time Is Right captures the transformational moment of an individual breaking free from her past into something beautiful and passionate.

• Plow Plant Reap, 2015, 13:02, New York, NY
Director and Choreographer Marta Renzi
An all-female community comes together, joins in a baptism and a roundelay against a majestic landscape of rolling farmland. Shot at the historic Miller Farm and danced by eleven members of the Slippery Rock University dance department.

• Whitespace Bodyspace, 2014, 4:23, Miami, FL
Director and Choreographer Ariel Baron-Robbins
This is a site-specific piece developed for an art space called Whitespace in West Palm Beach. The filmmaker visited the site and made a series of body-interventions in the landscape.

• Migration, 2015, 5:50, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Director Marlene Millar, Choreographer Sandy Silva
On an island in the Saint Lawrence Seaway, preparation for a migratory journey is expressed through percussive movement and vocals set within an unusual natural landscape.

• A dia de hoy…, 2015, 6:45, Miami, FL
Director and Choreographer Niurca Marquez
This is a journey of the unfleshed mover and the moved, a picture of the echoes that remain in spaces long after we depart; evidence of lives lived in earnest.

• All Waters, 2015, 7:03, Miami, FL
Director and Choreographer Julien Valme
“I feel you… your abundant presence and never ending grace. It is only in the stillness that you are with me. It is only in the darkness that I see you in the deepest part of my heart. There I find you. Yet with eyes wide open I lose you.”

• On the Other Side of the Lake, 2015, 6:10, Hollywood, FL
Director and Choreographer Jenny Larsson
On the Other Side of the Lake is an experimental short film where the main character is the lake – a body of water that connects memories, emotions and experiences. The lake becomes a catalyst for communal storytelling as well as a physical journey into the water.

• Klasse, 2015, 9:04, Tallahassee, FL
Director Malia Bruker, Choreographer Hannah Schwadron
Klasse tracks back to Jewish Hamburg at the height of WWII as children escape one by one on the Kindertransport. The preserved classroom from 1938 emphasizes the haunting fixity of place, while a cast of German students reimagines the courageous spirit of children with uncertain futures, both then and now.

The Way We See It: The Photography of Scot Sothern and Muir Vidler // October 23 – December 11

Mindy Solomon Gallery is pleased to present ‘The Way We See It,’ a new exhibition of photography by Scot Sothern and Muir Vidler. Both artists exemplify the photographer as observer and reporter by choosing subjects that are unique and fully authentic, living lives that exist in some instances outside of the cultural mainstream, finding comfort in neighborhoods and communities where individuality can be embraced.

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Opening Reception with the artists: Friday, October 23rd, from 6-9pm.
A reading from ‘Curb Service’ and ‘Sad City’ with Scot Sothern: Saturday, October 24th, from 1-2pm.

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Scot Sothern // Martha // 2012 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Artist Scot Sothern states in his memoir Lowlife: “I know a place not far from here where I can take your picture. I can give you twenty bucks.” Sothern is inextricably bound to the street. He follows the comings and goings of the unnoticed with his eyes and his heart. In Lowlife, we learn through his photographic narrative to understand and empathize with the struggles of a community of people often harshly judged and overlooked.

Scot Sothern // Superman Dreams // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Scot Sothern // Superman Dreams // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

His newest body of work, ‘Sad City’ focuses on not just the women and she-males of the night, but the discarded and disenfranchised that dwell in plain sight: “It’s 1978 and I’m renting a clapboard dump high on a Silver Lake hill looking out toward Hollywood. The guy next door, on the other side of the wall, tells me he used to be a Black Panther and he did time for murder and he steals cars for a living. I ask him if he can get me a car in the two hundred dollar price range and he tells me he’ll keep an eye out. He lives with his sister who is a whore and totally blind. I ask her if she’s ever accidently climbs into a cop’s car but she doesn’t have much of a sense of humor.

Scot Sothern // The Neighbors // 2012 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Scot Sothern // The Neighbors // 2012 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Late one quiet Friday night I’m reading and have the door open when the sister next door starts screaming. It’s not my business but it continues for a while so I go next door and knock. The Black Panther opens the door and apologizes for the noise. His sister is on the floor in the middle of the room pulling her hair and beating on her head and screaming. I ask him if she’s alright and he says she will be in a little while. I go back to my place and open a beer and a little while later she stops screaming.”

Scot Sothern // Duck // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Scot Sothern // Duck // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

What inspired the shift in Sothern’s newest works, changing focus away from photographing prostitutes in hotel rooms to examining the often unseen parts of life through another lens? He says: “After years of dark one-on-one impromptu portraits it was time for a change: technologically, by spurning film for digital—and physically, by moving to the periphery of the action. My task now is to find from a distance what I previously found in eye contact and my own interference with my models. I’m looking for single-frame noir movies in Technicolor with bittersweet endings.

Scot Sothern // Playing in Traffic // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Scot Sothern // Playing in Traffic // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

The words accompanying the images should open an interior dialogue like a flashbulb opens shadow. Personal confessions and bare-naked exploitations are used to elicit empathy with bright and pretty colors to soothe the guilt. Sad City is a place where no one wants to live and the population never stops growing.”

The particulars of each image and story might be unappealing to those of us who live in communities of affluence or even middle class comfort, but the struggles of life on the street have a logic and a grittiness that is all around us. Sothern cares about his subjects, legitimizing their histories of anger and frustration.

Scot Sothern // The Gates of Hell 1 // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print

Scot Sothern // The Gates of Hell 1 // 2011 // 11 x 17 inches // Pigment print


Muir Vidler // Pooky’s Salon 1 // 2015 // 20 x 24 inches // Digital C-Type Print, Edition of 6

Muir Vidler // Pooky’s Salon 1 // 2015 // 20 x 24 inches // Digital C-Type Print, Edition of 6

Muir Vidler loves humor and irony. A photojournalist by profession, he observes locals while on assignment—searching for the real rather than the staged. He likes to contradict preconceived notions about what we (the outsiders) view a culture to be. One example: while traveling in Thailand, he visits Pooky’s Salon on Soi 6 in Pattaya. This is a place where transexual prostitutes go to have their hair and make-up done. They pay a set fee for the initial work in the morning and a couple of touch-ups during the evening. Vidler embraces the vibrancy and beauty of his subjects. He highlights their efforts to embrace hyper-feminine sexuality, allowing them to be provocative and demure simultaneously.

Muir Vidler // Purim, London 2 // 2014 // 20 x 24 inches // C-Print, Edition of 6

Muir Vidler // Purim, London 2 // 2014 // 20 x 24 inches // C-Print, Edition of 6

The challenges of each subject’s daily life become less apparent through the humanizing lens of our visual guides. Mindy Solomon Gallery is pleased to present the work of these talented and compassionate photographers.

Muir Vidler // Ian Baillie, Kilmarnock // 2014 // 20 x 24 inches // C-Type Print

Muir Vidler // Ian Baillie, Kilmarnock // 2014 // 20 x 24 inches // C-Type Print

Juana Valdes: An Inherent View of the World // October 23rd — December 11th

On view in the gallery’s Project Space October 23rd through December 11th, Juana Valdes explores the notion of culture, place, and chronology in her installation entitled ‘An Inherent View of the World.’ An Opening Reception with the artist will take place Friday, October 23rd, from 6-9pm at the gallery.

In this exhibition, Valdes creates a lavish, almost baroque accumulation of items which often get relegated to the discard pile when people are in the process of de-accessioning the so-called “dust collectors” of their past, decorative and sometimes utilitarian objects that might have been purchased on a family vacation or inherited from a relative and simply don’t belong in the next phase of life.

“The truth beyond the fetish’s glimmering mirage is the relationship of laborer to product; it is the social account of how that object came to be. In this view every commodity, beneath the mantle of its pricetag, is a hieroglyph ripe for deciphering, a riddle whose solution lies in the story of the worker who made it and the conditions under which it was made,” writes Leah Hager Cohen in Glass, Paper, Beans: Revolutions on the Nature and Value of Ordinary Things.

Read more about this project here.

In the words of writer Julie Chae: “Juana Valdes invites the viewer to ponder the history of global trade through the display of china and other domestic wares collected for her show. A multi-media installation artist trained in Western post-Modern philosophy and with backgrounds in sculpture and printmaking, Valdes presents a Duchampian project in which the artist’s selected objects become the art. Each of the domestic wares presented embodies the cultural values of its time and place, reflecting aesthetic and economic decisions made by the manufacturer and by various consumers throughout its existence. Having exhibited art installations with maps, ships, sails and various other media in the past, Valdes continues with her latest project to explore transculturation, pigmentocracy, history, and memory.”

Discarding material possessions is never easy and each re-acqauintance with something long-forgotten prompts questions and memories. How was this once used, who made it, where did I find it, and will someone else find it again? The boxes are left at the second-hand store and reassembled without a thought of the original intent of the previous owner. It is here that Juana Valdes does her research, scouring the shelves for treasures past their prime, blowing off the dust and re-examining their value.

Valdes invites the viewer to question their own object experience and the movement of material goods as a commodity, encompassing cross-cultural populations and historical transitions.

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Juana Valdes // An Inherent View of the World (Table Piece – detail)
2015-ongoing
7 feet x 16 feet x 16 inches
Collected decorative objects made of porcelain, bone china, glass,
and wood documented as still life settings