Gail Erwin‘s niche sculptures at 6 Bridges Gallery in Maynard explore the hidden, often very private, nature of prejudice. The aggregation of tiny boxes shows us intimate scenes of cruelty or implied violence. Nails, charred wood, chain, and wire are sometimes dusted with glitter or placed against shiny foil, creating an eerie attractiveness. Erwin also shows her signature cyanotypes; this new series of studies of empty windows and doorways often represent scenes of former violence, such as the homes of the ill-fated Cathars, or long-dead Celts.
The cooperative 6 Bridges Gallery presents Niche: Cyanotypes and Constructions through April 15, 2017. Gallery hours are Tuesday 11-3, Wednesday-Friday 11-6, Saturday, 10-5.
Boston artist Susan Alport has installed her 5th solo show at SOWA’s Kingston Gallery. It’s difficult to place Alport in any single context. Her work has encompassed drawing, installation, sculpture, painting and photography. Her new exhibit is a meditation on creation itself.
The ongoing process of making art as it originates in and flows through the artist’s senses is the core of the exhibit. Alport uses her own silver gelatin prints and appropriated ephemera: newspaper articles, postcards, yearbook photos. She re-photographs these in associative conglomerations, and juxtaposes them in groups that create a hide-and-seek of context and communication. Alport views the installation itself as a process, a temporal waypoint in the creator’s search. Says Alport: “I’m using this exhibit as a temporary stopping place to find, along with the viewer, points of interconnectedness to move the work forward.”
The sculpture “Fearless Girl” by Kristen Visbal is temporarily installed opposite the iconic life-size bull on Broadway in New York’s financial district. A plaque at the feet of “Fearless Girl,” branded with the SSGA logo, reads: “Know the power of women in leadership. SHE makes a difference.” The sculpture, which appears to be of a young white girl, will remain installed alongside Arturo Di Modica’s “Charging Bull” at least through the end of the month. Installed on the eve of International Women’s Day (March 8) the piece calls attention to not only to women’s defiance in the face of long odds, but the dearth of women in leadership positions in New York’s financial industry.
Although I often think of Yayoi Kusama as a sculptor, the “Infinity Rooms” she creates at the Hirschhorn Museum cause the viewer to be immersed in her mind and emotions in a way that transcends three dimensions. Since the 1960s, Kusama has been creating mirrored rooms filled with lights and her signature polka-dot patterns, but this is the first time her major works have been installed in the US as they were intended. At this point in time, it is difficult to grasp the huge reach and influence of Kusama’s career. Whether working in film, fashion, graphic design, or installation art, she has embodied the avant garde for 50 years and shows no signs of slowing down.
I pray with all of my love for tulips at the National Museum of Art, Osaka (top), one of Kusama’s first mirrored room installations (at bottom)
Through May 14th at the Hirschhorn, the exhibit then tours the US and Canada
At Lasell College’s Wedeman Gallery, artist-curator Janet Kawada has created a show that embodies the artist’s quest for ideas. Says Kawada, “Like an archaeologist who sifts through the dirt seeking an image of history to bring to life, an artist is constantly looking intently at the world around them to portray their feeling or vision.” Each of the five women in the show (Hilary Tolan, Janet Kawada, Samantha Fields, Gail Erwin, and Deborah Klotz) work in widely varying media, from cyanotypes to performance art. The show seems at first visually dissimilar, but time spent with each piece reveals the way in which it embodies the act of exploration. Below, Samantha Fields’ performative installation which will be featured in Sunday’s opening (1-4PM).
So proud of the 100,000 women who marched on Boston Common yesterday. A truly historic event.
I read about this eye-opening exhibit on Hyperallergic, one of my favorite art sites, and realize there’s still time to see the NY exhibit. A standout for me is Kazuko Miyamoto’s “Star Piece” (above, 1979)…”a five-pointed star, nine feet in either direction, composed of tightly coiled brown industrial paper, lying on the floor like a spread-eagled body. I immediately, and inexplicably, thought of the death of Ana Mendieta, who, six years after the sculpture was made, fell from the 34th-floor window of her Mercer Street apartment, a half-mile away — a tragedy for which Mendieta’s husband, Carl Andre, was tried and acquitted.”
Zürcher Gallery, 33 Bleecker Street, Bowery, Manhattan through January 15, 2017
Claudia Olds Goldie’s figurative ceramic work investigates the complex contradictions of body, mind, and perception, examining how living and aging change the psyche and the physical body. Focusing on the lives and bodies of women, she examines nature’s design and the forces that inevitably alter it.
Jan. 1 – Feb. 5 Boston Sculptors Gallery
Maynard’s Fine Arts Theatre recently hosted a short run of the documentary “Eva Hesse” by Marcie Begleiter, a work as humane and complex as the sculptor herself. Hesse’s childhood and relationships with other artists, including Sol LeWitt, are touchingly brought into focus. Her enormous creative energy and prescient intellect will be new to many viewers, but it’s Hesse’s work that takes center stage. Haunting, gorgeous, personal, and raw, it has inspired two generations of sculptors since Hesse’s death and will influence many more. An appraisal of her oeuvre that is overdue and welcome, this is a must-see.