Current Artists 2016-2017
Future exhibitions and programs will be listed here.
ruby onyinyechi amanze
Cammisa Buerhaus, Alexander Fleming, and Karin Schneider
Eric Ramos Guerrero
Sue Jeong Ka
Florentine and Alexandre Lamarche-Ovize
Sreshta Rit Premnath
Jennifer May Reiland
Sara Chang Yan
ruby onyinyechi amanze
ada the Alien and her cohort of kindred creatures exist playfully in their self-constructed, chimeric universe. Space is a malleable object that appears as an ever-shifting character in the ongoing, non-linear narrative. The drawings are inventions; made up worlds, imagined happenings, multiple dimensions, embellished realities. Most everything is fluid, including notions of permanence, geography and home. In this in-between space of being, creatures find authenticity, wholeness and freedom in their ability to simultaneously belong nowhere and everywhere. In this world, they play.
My work illuminates the deeply embedded power structures of our Digital Age. Through forms of performance and intervention I insert myself into sites such as Googles search engines, protest rallies at Republican National conventions, the U.S. Postal System, and a no-fly zone over the Superbowl in New Jersey to subvert the established narratives operating in the public realm. In doing so, my work unearths a space for the public to question the familiar, and envision alternative realities and histories.
My interventionist practice manifests in documentation, photography, video, text, installation and web-based media.
Cammisa Buerhaus, Alexander Fleming & Karin Schneider
Cammisa Buerhaus, Alex Fleming, and Karin Schneider will be working together in Open Sessions as an exercise of research into action. Having collaborated in different capacities through the artist run space CAGE, the three artists will draw, diagram, and model another form of interaction. Their exchange will lead the production and demarcation, among the interstices of their singularities, they don't necessarily have in common.
Danielle's work explores the colonialism of mind and body—the interpellation of thoughts, feelings and social relations by power structures working through news, advertising, political speech, and digital media. She focuses on the processes of construction of race, gender, age and class that are generated through target-marketing practices, which commodify subjectivities. She is interested in subverting such processes in order to understand and shift them toward a non-essentialized space, blurring fiction and reality.
She is looking at drawing in relation to animation, first popularized in the early twentieth century and was adopted by both avant-garde artists seeking progressive social change and by private companies seeking to better market their products and grant inanimate commodities “life.”
Mustafa Faruki is an architect and founding partner of theLab-lab for architecture, a practice concerned with completely re-inventing the potential outputs of architectural design.
He is not a licensed provider of architectural services.
Eric Ramos Guerrero
Eric Ramos Guerrero is a multidisciplinary artist based in New York City. He was born in the Philippines, and moved to California where he earned a BA from San Diego State University. In 2006 he received his BFA at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. Later he moved to New York where Ramos Guerrero completed his MFA from Columbia University.
Eric Ramos Guerrero considers the detritus of the West as a place where political and cultural unrest endure and return to the viewer as glimpses; things half seen between the foliage of an obstructed beach view or as a weak radio signal emerging through the static. Through painting, drawing, sculpture, video and performance, Ramos Guerrero mines multiculturalism, hip hop, brit pop, and our romanticism of the exotic.
Sue Jeong Ka
My interests lie in extrapolating institutional and postcolonial critiques of the public systems as a means of accessing and revealing immigrant issues in discursive situations. As an artist, I have segued from site specificity to a socially engaged practice and aim to develop alternative public services as an interventionist project.
Drawing is an intersectional and fluid medium that covers many different types of works beyond traditional genres. My practice deals with legally arguable issues in relation to social sculpture and is presented in various forms. I question how drawing can expand and represent my explorations in social sculpture.
My artwork is rooted in borrowed and invented narratives. These narratives explore comprehensive visions of urban Utopias/Dystopias that converge at the intersection of architecture, emerging technologies, and culture; anchoring them with direct relevance to contemporary social issues in ways that communicate their participation in, and alienation from the larger world. As a Nigerian-born, U.S. citizen, my formative years were marked by constantly moving and perpetually adapting to new places. My work often responds to either the anxiety or the potential of these spaces, and how one navigates, maps, and perceives them. My creative process articulate these narratives, by combining digital sketches and 3D computer modeling with photographs, hand-drawing, and collage, in order to produce detailed yet whimsical illustrations, video installations, speculative photo-montages, and mobile architectural constructs.
I am concerned with instances of drawing that point towards an abiding desire, fear or possibility that the thing drawn––event, person, creature––will become animate, and that this would be disastrous. My work layers disparate fantasies of political resistance, heroic aspiration and utopian transcendence with one another and with the catastrophic fruits of their emergence into concrete reality. Some of the materials and processes I employ are literally drawing(s) as such: architectural floorplans for a dome-based penitentiary, sketches produced by my great uncle as he became embroiled in a political intrigue that would cost him his life, a portrait commissioned from a courtroom sketch artist. I also crudely enter into disciplines such as mime, puppetry and dance. I seek a practice of relentless stumbling.
Drawing is a central part of my process and often the end result. I also produce print, sculpture, text and performance. My work takes advantage of an impure aesthetic, incorporating high and low culture, while foregrounding practices that probe collective fictions of person and personality. In this I am concerned with representations of blacks, blackness, or (the color) black within a stealthy fugitive movement that breaks normalizing enclosures.
I create geometric drawings, text paintings, prints photographs, and social practice projects. My work borrows from materials found in historical archives, memoirs, rituals, and documentary photographs. I connect the aesthetics and theoretical concerns of new media, the conceptual art movement, minimalism, Suprematism, and Islamic geometric art with the African-American experience, human rights, and social justice issues. My upbringing as a first-generation African American Muslim informs my work in many respects and I seek to make critical contributions to conversations on the status of Black America, American society, politics, culture, and Islam in the 21st century. My approach to working with materials and ideas is part of a larger theoretical project that poses critical questions about process, power, representation and the construction of communal narratives. Through the experience of looking at my work, I am inviting my audiences to challenge traditional boundaries of race, nationhood, and religion and create wholly new constructions that broaden our collective imaginations.
Florentine & Alexandre Lamarche-Ovize
Florentine and Alexandre Lamarche-Ovize have been working together since 2006. Their practice is resolutely
hybrid, migrant and fragmented. It combines sculpture, drawing, photography, objects and posters.
Their installations constitute only a stopping point in their work process, which they conceive of as a flux of
continuous experiment, a perpetual calling into question of the forms and sign they use. Each work is seen
as the chapter of a much broader narrative that goes well beyond the framework of the exhibition, condenses earlier experiments and contains the ferment of works to come. The syntax is shifting and the vocabulary is inspired by literature (Melville, Gombrowicz, Ponge), as much as by the history of painting and sculpture, and also takes a few detours via comic strips and cinema (non-linear narration, notions of framing and montage). Elements of everyday life and their immediate environment are also integrated, grounding the propositions in the urban, social and cultural context out of which they act.
The two artists lay their subject bare, take it apart, study it from every possible angle, in a kind of «visual
enquiry», as they themselves call it. The play of deframing, squaring and reversal, and the shifts from one
form or material to another, unfold several narrative threads that become intertwined.
The forms are never there for their own sake, but are valuable more as an index or documentation of an ensemble that is in the process of being constructed, in which the process and methodology are an integral partof the work. Hence a vision of sculpture and installation that is deliberately anti-monumental, non-erectile
The fault line is subjacent, failure always possible, the fall seen from the angle of its dynamics, for it implies
a positive renegotiation of the initial syntax.Over time, Lamarche-Ovize have constructed a kind of «brain/
house» from which images come forth, persistent traces of a capricious memory that sometimes lets out diffracted
signs, fragments of stories, ghostly dreams projected on multiform screens conducive to the viewer’s
physical and mental deambulation.
My body of work deals with issues of place, territory, and the relationships that humans have with their environments. My recent video work is a 5 part cycle of essay videos entitled Solastagia. This series takes climate change, extinction, and the Anthropocene as conditions for dealing with the affective experience of the present.
My approach to video-making is to utilize the uneventful, often sensuous and atmospheric contextualizing imagery that typifies “B-roll”. In film conventions “B-roll” is footage used in transitions, to mark time, and provide physical context. I place it in a central role—a gesture that highlights the everyday and the seemingly inconsequential. To this footage, I graft text (blogs, product descriptions, overheard conversations, responses on forums) in a process that is a bit like collage; I add sound, narration, and new footage in an additive process. This approach speculates and figures uncertain futures, avoiding a fixed identity, either in authorship or narrative voice and resists notions of predictive knowing or expertise. My work is also informed by ongoing solo and collaborative projects exploring how nature figures into commercial imagery in Hollywood and advertising through computer generated imagery, particularly in considering how CGI is used in composing fantasies of nature, or in fusing nature and commodities in brands and advertisements.
For the Open Sessions program I will be focusing on recording the Anthropocene, through an exploration of the mark-making that geologists are examining–the material effects that are measurable on the earth’s outer surface–to determine if we have entered this new epoch.
In 2013, during the creation of my experimental animation “Recycled,” my creative direction began to turn towards archival and found footage re-appropriation, and I adapted the sociological methodology for my research and studies. I began my research into the literature database as an artist, trying to look for the poetry and drama that exist in the space between reality and fantasy. Animations and videos became my language for writing and expression.
As a filmmaker /artist, I enjoy exploring the mysterious side of historical archives, and further developing them with my imagination while trying to find evidence in real life to support their existence. And, in the midst of all these, I also try to maintain a sense of innocence and humor in my creative direction.
The work is a critique of the acquisition of knowledge, in terms of how information is distributed, disseminated and discarded, through the process of deconstructing objects and de-circulating/decoding institutional relics, reconfiguring these commodities the way I think they should be experienced as an initiative to arts transformative function. Through cultural research, drawing, riffs on traditional sculpture and performance based installations, my interests and concerns enlist ideas of re-appropriation and mis-representation of images, text or forms that already exist, with personal/historical narratives, layering Socratic methods of questioning and humor as a post-colonial pedagogical dialogue on manipulating perspective of the dominant ideology, confronting cultural bias, perceptions of otherness and racial fabrications. Everything we see has the potential to become inexplicably something else in terms of social justice and trans-pedagogy, wherein concepts dictate materials and process.
I’ve always been interested in the mechanical aspects of things.
Working with sound reveals the air in which we all swim as yet another malleable and responsive material. It bounces and is deflected by space and objects, changing and acquiring a new character.
A non-hierarchical approach to sound (isn’t it all noise?) and its organizational principles (this doesn’t sound like music!) allows for the uncovering and exposing of latent patterns that hide in the unremarkable.
The sound of physics.
Mechanical and electronic.
Rubber bands and sine waves.
I draw to learn about myself and the drawings are a result of this dialog between thought and action. I am interested in the exploration of drawing as a tool for cognitive learning and each mark bearing the potential to inform us of new understanding. Often times my work is a result of interdisciplinary thought and collaborative exchange spanning diverse mediums such as drawing, painting, video, sound, urban intervention, generative algorithms, live scribing and more.
I have been drawing daily for years. The resulting avalanche of images is central to my practice, it’s where I excavate and refine ideas. For me, the power of drawing is in its ability to be speculative, to show things that could be, will be, or can never be. There is a distance in drawing from the responsibilities and constraints of the physical world. Crafting imagery with little more material baggage than a pen and paper allows me to fantasize, speculate wildly, be viciously irresponsible or wield the authority of a tyrant.
My work begins at the point where sculpture touches painterly nuances as an unfolding
sketchbook of our everyday reality in physical space. Playing with notions of duality like form and utility, familiarity and unfamiliarity, and observing the relation between sculpture, painting, and drawing. The dimensions of common paraphernalia like headphones, i-phone cases, pushpins, or light-switches are altered, and elements such as the brush-stroke move from flat surfaces to sculptural form in a process of formal metamorphosis. The room functions as a frame for the shifting relationships between representation, abstraction, and materiality of my process.
I am an architect and an independent researcher. My work explores diverse disciplines through collaborative work methodologies, teaching practice and self-driven investigations. My ideas are concerned with socio-cultural displacements, de-constructions and the exploration of crowd identity through spatial post-productions. I recycle sounds, meanings, images and objects to understand cultural history, an inquiry which is the subject of my Architecture practice. I use architecture as the vehicle to immerse viewers in a world that both distorts and clarifies the limits between reality and fiction. I build questions that ask: Are you sure you have chosen the right meanings to define the reality you desire?
Sreshta Rit Premnath
Jennifer May Reiland
My drawings are a series of connections strung between two points—personal experience and historical reality. I place my own feelings and memories into the context of the factual and mythical past. The world of my drawings is informed by a religious childhood which gave way to a secular art practice. A Christ-like sacrificial figure often occupies a central role in my work. The bodies in my drawings are sacrificed or watch the sacrifices of others, with gender informing each individual's role. Special areas of exploration are bullfighting, Christian tradition, and war.
My work examines the modes and measures of knowledge that are transmitted, visibly and invisibly, via structure and stuff. I approach the built environment, my personal history, and material, as frameworks for site responsive installations and sculpture that engage the relational and associative possibilities inherent in medium, architecture, the body, selfhood, and place. Throughout runs a fascination with the phenomenology of site; the ways architecture is (mis)repurposed towards contemporary needs and uses; rule-making (and bending) as a strategy for uncovering idealizations and uncertainty in experience and expectations; and the large-and-small consequences of intentionality, ambition, limit, and failure. Drawing is my translator between intent and effect.
My work takes on different approaches ranging from anthropological fieldwork to improv performance. Mining discarded ideas, failed dreams, and abandoned hopes, I am preoccupied with giving graspable form to the ambiguities of human experience. Whether the projects take place at a market square in Marrakech, across Eastern Ukraine, or in a small town of Maine, I let real-life situations guide the work. Often inspired by specific cultural and political contexts, I merge storytelling, sculpture, and moving images to pay tribute to everyday resilience, solidarity, and humor.
In a current project Tiny Revolution, I play on Orson Welles’ quote: “Every joke is a tiny revolution” to explore power and humor as two poles of political behavior. A drawing can span from clandestine note-taking to riotous satire, revealing something invisible, or upsetting repressive regimes. Modest and nimble in its means of production, drawing is one of the most immediate forms of culture-making. Through the lenses of satire, mythology, and common rituals, I use drawing as a means of exploring how resistance and dissidence find their expression within dominant narratives.
Among the different media with which I work, I see ink drawing as the most primary way to visualize my thoughts. Rather than building a heavy object, I’m always fascinated by the idea of using little to represent big, using emptiness to reflect presence, or using space to dialogue with time. I believe drawing flows inside of us and surrounds us.
I’ve been interested in how something becomes something — more than what that something is — since I began exploring language. The process more than the identity — what I’m made of undefined. Poetry allows me a fluid transience to explore the edges of cognition — our acceptance into the world we invent, the one that watches us back — combined within clarified layers of visual interpretation. A certain restraint to let the language become as porous as drawing — the act of drawing as immediate gesture, permanently spontaneous. I’m interested in the re-interpretation among the spaces between language and page, shape and skeleton, skin and sensory awakening, poetry and body, the writing inside the drawing.
In my interdisciplinary practice I use video, sound and photography. Starting with the assertion that memory is political, my work often focuses on the fraught binary of remembering and forgetting. My projects begin with questions provoked by archival documents, objects, or facts, and their social existence and persistence as memory or material. Engaging in these materials, my work considers structures of time through narratives, both individual and collective, and transnational histories. In representing temporal structures, I have been thinking about the ways in which video, sound, and photographs mark and map space – a contingent act that calls attention to the very nature of memory itself. As an artist working in digital video, I have also been thinking about the shift in cinematography in regards to light. The word “cinematography” combines the Greek word kinema (motion) with graphé (drawing); central to this practice is this concept of drawing or writing with light. I’m interesting in exploring the boundaries of cinematography in relationship to both film and the digital medium around this concept of writing with light.
I am a mixed media artist. Through autobiography my work references the notion of past and present, the constant changing of place, and the dialogical tension between "here" and "there." Drawing for me is not a stopping point, but a direct means to study, realize ideas, and push further.
Sara Chang Yan
My work charts visible and invisible movements, including those of sound, time, the verticality of a palm tree trunk, water streaming down mountains, temperature, prayer, and sequences of views. In my work, silence is a verb, just like the majority of concepts. The work activates the entire field of the paper. The multitude of gestures explores the potential of emptiness.
My work is research and information based. I use investigational logic to create drawings, sound works, and videos that diagram imaginary and physical journeys. My practice is focused on the translation of traces existing between tamed and untamed worlds.