posted by Caroline Picard

So, I’m in a group show up in Logan Square featuring apartment gallery artists (a hot topic for spring, what with HPAC’s show), in addition to which this year’s GL Selection Committee Member, Elizabeth Chodos, also curated a show going up at Alagon Gallery. I thought I’d include the info here, since it would likely make a nice little route for Saturday activities….

1) Myth in Material

A curatorial project by Elizabeth Chodos, featuring the work of Ryan Fenchel, Rebecca Gordon, Mathew Paul Jinks, Stacie Johnson, and Michael Ruglio-Misurell

1049 N Paulina #3R (entrance on Cortez)
Chicago, IL 60622

April 18 – May 10
Opening Reception April 18, 7 – 10 PM

For the press:
It’s the stuff of everyday life, the materials that surround us into which we imbed myths, memories and transformative powers. It’s these objects, that sometimes carry a shared value like gold, counter-cultural significance like an obscure band’s album, or a personal history like an old letter, around which we construct value, and through which we connect to our friends, loved ones, or those that share our heritage and beliefs. Materials contain more than molecules, they are touch stones, indexes, references to important moments and belief systems, they are conduits for religious, cultural, and personal myths that we construct in order to structure our lives, and ultimately make meaning out of an untidy existence.

Ryan Fenchel is influenced by the esoteric practices of ancient mystery schools and their symbology.  He uses a variety of media to create intuitive 2-D and 3-D works, all of which are collages at their core. Fenchel is invested in geometry and its relationship to nature, problem solving, and metaphor. Between the subject of his work and the materials, his practice yields a romantic art process and a way to investigate ancient beliefs/rituals of self-transformation.

Rebecca Gordon makes objects, environments, and performances that honor the materiality of world-making. She aims to visually articulate the intriguing interrelations between physical objects, images, and practices and the creation of social spaces in which it could be possible to experience the world, and ourselves, differently. In this sense, Rebecca is interested in the ways in which subcultural groups engage in materialist rituals—how do we create new realities through the creation, use, manipulation, and exchange of objects? How can we understand the relationship between personhood and style? Throughout, though often not explicitly, Rebecca is interested in the material dimensions of the ways in which communities create understandings of gender and sexuality that allow for self-conceptions that deviate from those available in the surrounding cultural spaces. She aims to articulate these alternative gender formations in part through a re-evaluation of the relationship between material objects and virtual objects and spaces—in hopes of articulating a world in which bodies and objects can be experienced as phenomenologically coextensive with virtual spaces, projected images, and digital data.

Mathew Paul Jinks utilizes video, sound, sculpture and performance to explore themes of myth, belief systems, loss and memory. In all his work Mathew plays the role of conduit between spaces and horizon points related to this theme. He combines both historical and fictional narratives with his own to foster new ones, to explore ontological potential: the  nature of being. Mathew is working with the idea of autobiography and the problems of mythologizing the past. The autobiographical text serves as a blind-spot from which to access his studio practice.

Stacie Johnson’s paintings are portraits of personal spaces and symbolic objects. Johnson looks towards the psychic potential in physical situations. The subject matter is often informed by symbols of good luck: both real and fictitious and from various sources and cultures. A narrative about material mysticism, or finding the extra energy within an object, is tied to a formal discussion about the rectangle and the serendipity of color and shape.

Johnson explores the tension between actualizing enigmatic images and realizing artificiality: a Modernist sense of belief and a Postmodern awareness of limitation. To intensify the tradition of the still life and the graphic abstraction, her paintings fetishize Modernism and seek transcendence through Pop.

Michael Ruglio-Misurell draws from the neglected and entropic, altering objects and environments that flicker between the composure of arrangement and sheer mess. While appropriating from mishaps, disastrous moments and trashed spaces in the built environment, Ruglio-Misurell simultaneously produces and destroys in order to emphasize the uncertainty of space.  As controlled experiments, he organizes fictions of invasions and displacements by staging ambiguous narratives.  Juxtaposing found objects within layers of artifice, Ruglio-Misurell adapts found and fabricated materials according to each piece, creating equilibrium between the disposable nature of material culture with the production of new forms.

2) Dusty Bunnyfield vs. Molotovia Cottontail
Last Reception: the group show
This Saturday, April 18, from 7-10pm
show runs until April 19

On the fifth weekend, the space will be reserved for a group exhibition that will include Fabio, Brown and seven artist friends who also run apartment/domestic gallery spaces. As this event precedes the upcoming “Artists Run Chicago” exhibition at the Hyde Park Art Center, the exhibition is intended as a visual continuation of the conversations engendered by the HPAC’s invites. Participants will be encouraged to create works that use the first two incarnations of the show as a springboard, but works are not expected to directly address the topic of apartment/domestic art-spaces.


EC Brown & Catie Olson : FLAT
Miguel Cortez : Antena
Lucia Fabio : mini dutch
Vicki Fowler:
Eric May:
Roots & Culture
Liz Nielsen & Josh Kozuh:, Swimming Pool Project Space
Irene Pérez & Chris Smith; Second Bedroom Project Space
Caroline Picard:
Green Lantern

The concept behind the show was written about in newcity. Either pick up a free copy this week or just click here.