Fragments of Space

October 10 – 31, 2015

Featuring work by:
Beka Goedde
Erik Sommer
Alison White
Curated by Sarah Goodchild Robb

Curatorial Statement/ Press Release from Sarah Goodchild Robb

When asked to curate a show for academic, I took some time daydreaming about what I wanted to put together.  In his beautiful text entitled The Poetics of Space (1958), the phenomenologist Gaston Bachelard writes about the home as a a structure that houses not only the body, but the imagination.  He champions the act of daydreaming, which becomes inextricably entwined with the space in which the act occurs.  These familiar spaces create the solitude and environment where creativity and imagination awaken.  Fragments of Space, a phrase borrowed from Bachelard’s text, is an investigation in the different approaches the three New York City-based artists selected for this show consider space and functional objects.  Their creative interpretation of man-made interiors render their works non functional and suggest the transformative possibilities of material-based work.

Beka Goedde is a multi disciplinary artist who works in printmaking and sculpture.  Her work often refers to quotidian objects found in the kitchen or home.  Close Ecounters (with tablecloth) (2015), is a woodcut print that plays with scale in that it appears to be a zoomed-in view of the weave of a table cloth.  Her print is accompanied by five delicate drawings (see image list for titles), whose subject matter varies from formal studies of materials, such as two-by-fours, or functional objects, such as glasses.  These compositions are like vignettes into quiet and poetic moments we may witness within the home.  Her Sounding A-E (2015) wall sculptures, a series of plumbing-like pipes that seem to grow out of the wall, make visible a system in building that is generally hidden.  Their phallic form are a humorous nod to the human body, as well as the hyper-sexualized vocabulary used in the construction world.

Erik Sommer works as a painter, sculptor, and installation artist.  His paintings reveal fragmented moments walking in the New York urban landscape. Mascara (2015) is at once an abstract layered composition and a snap shot of erosion, for we see an impression of the effects of time on weather-worn concrete and painted facades.  In his installation Painting, Interior (2015), the viewer stumbles upon an interior painter’s set-up: we see the cans, the brushes, roller, ladder, drop cloth, all coated in concrete.  The staged arrangement results in a sense of theatrically.  The unfinished painted wall suggests that the figure will return to complete their task–a moment suspended in time before the work will be completed.  Although this installation portrays an interior scene, the use of concrete, associated with an exterior environment, blurs the lines between inside and outside.

Alison White works both as a painter and a multi-media artist.  Sandbox passage (2015) consists of a painting and a floor-based installation.  Much of her imagery, as in the painting, references interiors and old wall paper.  Although she frequently uses craft-based materials in her three-dimensional work, she manipulates and amalgamates these elements resulting in a sophisticated composition.  The materials simultaneously create a tension and undergo a transformation–from “low” to “high” art.  In her floor arrangement, lace, paint, gold leafing, and glitter on found objects, such as picture frames, woodwork for an old clock, and boxes filled with trinkets as if from childhood, are synthesized into an abstract sculpture and establish a formal relationship to the their painting counterpart.