Dedicated to covering the visual arts community in Connecticut.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Thursday night opening at Artspace; 7 new solo shows

50 Orange St, New Haven, (203) 772-2709
Patrick Chamberlain: On Your Mark
Sarah Bliss: Journey from Longjiang
Jennifer Crupi: Beyond Words: Expressive Gestures
Ben Blanc: Worlds Apart
John O'Donnell: PG-13
Miguel Trelles: Trámite; Hsiao
Jeff Slomba: Sound Change
May 6—June 6, 2010.
On Your Mark will be on display through June 5, 2010.
Public Opening: Thurs., May 6, 6—8 p.m.

Press release

Artspace announces seven new solo exhibitions with works by Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island based artists. Patrick Chamberlain's exhibition, On Your Mark opened on Apr. 1, 2010. The six exhibitions of Sarah Bliss, Jennifer Crupi, Ben Blanc, John O'Donnell, Miguel Trelles, and Jeff Slomba will open on Thurs., May 6, from 6—8 p.m. Common themes that emerge throughout the Artspace galleries are correlations between synthetic and natural forms, the history of labor and cultural practices, and cultural excess and technological evolution.

Gallery 1 • Patrick Chamberlain's exhibition, On Your Mark, represents the artist's first solo show. Chamberlain's abstract paintings illuminate Gallery 1 with hoppy colors and tangential lines and shapes.

Gallery 2 • Journey from Longjiang, by Sarah Bliss, utilizes the economic history of Artspace: a former furniture store, to comment on labor and transportation practices overseas. As furniture production is outsourced to Asia, US jobs are lost, and the materials that are used to transport the products are land filled or burned to create waste and highly toxic gases. Bliss's video serves as a trace of this trans-oceanic journey, and her sculptures contain a lifeless beauty, one that is both delicate and volumetric.

Gallery 3 • Beyond Words: Expressive Gestures, by Jennifer Crupi, is a group of interactive, prosthetic-like proposals for instruments of gestural expression. Each sculpture imagines and presents a different outlet for stress, excitement, and the desire to communicate through body language and self-discovery. By viewing and interacting with the work, the artist seeks to illicit the underlying reasons for our seemingly casual gestures.

Gallery 4 • Worlds Apart, by Ben Blanc, is a series of abstract sculptures that evoke natural and man-made materials as organic forms re-emerge from synthetic materials. Blanc is the founder of Ben Blanc Studio; he collects materials, explores various artistic processes, and reinterprets his design research. Blanc's work often exudes a plastic quality as objects oscillate, shift, and reach a delicate balance.

Gallery 5 • PG-13, by John O'Donnell, is an installation that appropriates various forms of popular media-plastic toys from the discount bin, blockbuster movies, magazines with pictures of food, bad air-brushed pornography, and athletes such as Michael Jordan. O'Donnell implicates a culture over-crowded with material excess, popular icons, and kitsch objects. Many of the forms that the artist chooses recount a connection to childhood in the 90s, an interest in Surrealism, and a concern for a post-industrial society obsessed with blogging, commenting, and crafting assemblages. The result is an installation of personal reference that becomes obscured and expanded upon by each viewer.

Long Wall • Trámite; Hsiao, by Miguel Trelles, is a series of paintings that take a humorous stance on the compositions of Li's Xiaojing tu, Trámite. In the artist's re-interpretation, the "demons" scroll, which constitutes an ethnic caricature of the "other" in 13th Century China, is used to describe a 21st Century Latino American population. The paintings cast a playful air on the traditional allegory and illustrate the varied complexities and stereotypes used to misrepresent a class of people.

Gallery 7 • Sound Change, by Jeff Slomba, is a series of investigations concerned with acts of selective preservation in response to the evolution of technology. The artist introduces scale, context, and gravitational shifts to de-familiarize the viewer with common archetypes of seashells, cassette tapes, speakers, and concrete blocks. The artist reveals their structural arrangements as being dynamic, layered, and malleable forms whose narrative continues to trace cultural production.

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