ASSEMBLAGE: THE MFA SHOW
Curated by Julia Speed and Sophie Olympia Riese
April 22 - May 22, 2020
Assemblage puts forth a virtual curated survey of this year's MFA class, whose thesis exhibitions were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. We hoped this beyond-the-studio platform would provide insight to the field of emerging artists, and create dialogues across artworks and practices that perhaps would not have occurred otherwise. While these students graduated during an unprecedented crisis, we are inspired by the art they are creating. We look forward to following these talented artists' careers and to the physical and virtual assemblages to come. Thank you to all of the artists who submitted, and for the opportunity to experience your art during this time.
I'LL TAKE YOU THERE
Curated by Marian Casey
The Olympia Project @ The McKibbin Lofts
January 10 - March 10, 2020
Texan-born, New York-based artist Gary Cruz explores the potential for almost painterly abstraction in iPhone shot and edited works, creating compelling portraits of queer space across 30 banners playfully ensconced in aluminum-clad walls. I’ll Take You There documents the interiors of gay bars he’s visited across the country and the world, reflecting on queer sites, aesthetic, community, and history.
The Olympia Project @ 87 Grand
August 15 - October 16, 2019
In Matthew Morrocco’s Orchid.Summer we are met with a yellow monochrome figure gazing into an infinite landscape. The figure wanders through the pictures as if singing a too-late love song for something they lost. While humans were busy remaking the earth in their own anthropocentric image, nature has continued to ebb and flow with the seasons all the while never ceasing to bring us the brilliant colors of the rainbow. But for how much longer?
This new body of work explores the use and value of that colorful figure within the natural landscape. The colorful suit is emblazoned across the image. At first it appears pleasant, but on second viewing seems to smear the landscape with its stark, colorful, and compositionally averse fury. The figure does not fit into the landscape but rather stands outside, as if contemplating the twilight years of the earth as we know it. The figure, though yellow, appears melancholic as it traverses this groomed landscape, seemingly in search of a sublime vista that no longer grants access to that world of fruitful natural wonder.
REAL IMAGINED BORDERS
IRIT OVADIA ROSENBERG
Young Curators, New Ideas V
at Detroit Art Week
Trumbull & Porter Hotel
July 17 - 21, 2019
What are the impacts of walls, maps, and borders on our society, and on our individual psyches? Since the time humans began sheltering together, even before they moved out of caves and started building structures, they have been infatuated by walls. As human societies grew, so too did the scale of this obsession: we began making walls so big we needed maps to keep track of what they enclosed. Maps too are written by the victor, defining spaces and peoples.
In Real Imagined Borders, Irit Rosenberg presents visceral sculptures that explore the true impact of these divisions on our society. She is heavily influenced by her experiences as a child in the early days of Israel’s statehood and her perception of the importance of maps and borders in that society. This concept reemerged for her while living in the United States during the 1990s, when a wall between Mexico and the US first entered the public imagination. Today, the work that sprang from this focus seems even more prescient, and more poignant. Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall” and a late introduction to ceramics became the jumping off point for a central question: Who, if anyone, benefits from these divisive constructions?
The Olympia Project @ 87 Grand
June 9 - July 12, 2019
Interdisciplinary artist Justin Sterling investigates urban ecosystems in Broken Windows, collecting broken and abandoned objects from the city at large, often from various neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan, and repurposing them, reimagining their stories. He fills them with new life, literally and figuratively, using a variety of media to express both their pasts and their futures. His aim is to unravel the way we view power, authority, and control by revealing various truths about urban ecosystems, poverty, collective memory, and bad-faith legislation. Each window, or group of windows, presents a view to a new world, as it could be. Nor does he stop with the windows; Sterling’s approach to reinterpreting our environment encompasses myriad urban objects, from fire hydrants to traffic cones, that are used in various ways to conceptualize new possibilities.
Borgia INC😃Gallerie B.B.
April 19 - June 29, 2019
Looking at these photographs, the viewer finds herself haunted by a familiar uneasiness. The centrality of Morrocco to every composition, the way his hiding only draws the viewer’s attention, captures how human beings have remade the earth in their own anthropocentric image. We live in a time in which we increasingly realize how the natural world--even its most remote corners, whether the deep sea or the rainforest--has been forever altered by human actions. Even natural spaces that appear untouched have often sustained heavy contact with the human--supposedly authentic experiences with “nature” have, more often than not, been extensively curated and anthropocentrized before the arrival of the newest human individual. Embodying this reality, Morrocco’s anonymous figure--mostly stripped of, age, race, and almost all of the categories central to human identity--filters the eye away from the breath-taking Sakura trees.
ORCHID (IN NYC)
The Olympia Project @ 87 Grand
A curated selection of work from three series within Matthew Morrocco’s ORCHID body of work as part of a special pop-up exhibition taking place in Brooklyn, New York to coincide with the opening of ORCHID.Spring curated by Sophie Olympia Riese and presented at Gallerie B.B. in Denver, CO from April 19 - June 15, 2019.
ADAMA DELPHINE FAWUNDU
Winter group show
Collaborated with other members of SECRET DUNGEON on a winter group show, TENSE, for which I brought in Adama Delphine Fawundu's photography, addressing intergenerational and intercultural tension.
THE TIES THAT BIND, BEND, BREAK
JARRETT KEY AND BRETT CHARLES SEILER
Solo curatorial debut, creating a conversation between Brooklyn-based Jarrett Key and Cape Town-based Brett Charles Seiler, using painting, sculpture, and installation to address issues of sexual orientation, race, gender, and social and political discrimination.
LAUNCH OF MDINGI COUTTS
Pitti Uomo 89, Florence
Cape Town Menswear Fashion Week
AKJP, Cape Town
Managed communications for the designer around the launch of his inaugural menswear line (Mdingi Coutts) at Pitti Uomo 89 and Cape Town Menswear Fashion Week 2016, and the concurrent launch of his seasonal womenswear line at AKJP in Cape Town.