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ARLINGTON ARTS CENTER

ASSEMB\Y

2019 REGIONAL BIENNIAL


ASSEMB\Y REGIONAL BIENNIAL 2019

FEATURED ARTISTS: Kara Braciale Wilfred Brunner Bradley Chriss Shannon Collis + Liz Donadio chanan delivuk Lillian Bayley Hoover Katie Kehoe Dean Kessmann Magnolia Laurie Khánh H. Lê Gina Gwen Palacios Judith Pratt Sarah G. Sharp Molly Springfield McKinley Wallace III Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin

ALSO ON VIEW: MARISSA LONG: BORROWED FROM DUST in the Wyatt Resident Artists Gallery


Director’s Foreward

Arlington Arts Center’s roots date back to the mid-1970s, when a community of local artists established studios in the county’s old Maury School building. More than four decades later, Arlington Arts Center (AAC) has evolved to support three core functions: professional artist residencies, yearround classes and workshops, and a critically-acclaimed exhibitions program. Decidedly regional in focus, AAC’s exhibitions program showcases the work of contemporary artists through professionally-curated solo, group, and thematic exhibitions. Over the years, AAC has served as a springboard for artists who have gone on to earn national and even international acclaim. AAC’s commitment to exhibiting the most compelling work the region has to offer led to the establishment of Assembly, a regional biennial open to artists in Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. AAC’s curator Blair Murphy has done an exceptional job selecting and curating the works represented in this first biennial at AAC. It was not an easy task, given the large number of applications from a wide range of thoughtful and talented artists throughout the region. In the end, Blair selected a diverse group of sixteen artists whose work ranges from painting to photography, mixed-media installation to sculpture, providing a snapshot of this artistic moment in the Mid-Atlantic. The artists in Assembly 2019 also offer perspectives on today’s most pressing issues through works that tackle race relations, climate change, and immigration among other themes. Featuring emerging artists alongside established ones, Assembly 2019 collectively represents some of the region’s most outstanding artistic voices. As we approach our 50th anniversary in 2024, AAC is poised to occupy a pivotal place in the cultural landscape of the Mid-Atlantic region. Assembly, our first regional biennial, positions AAC as an ongoing champion of regional artists, while offering our local community, as well as audiences throughout the region, the opportunity to appreciate their work. Holly Koons Executive Director


About ASSEMB\Y

The process of organizing Assembly 2019, Arlington Arts Center’s inaugural regional biennial, has been a matter of considering not only the make-up of this year’s exhibition but also the long-term goals and possibilities of the program as a whole. What should a regional biennial look like? What are the possibilities and limitations of this type of exhibition? How can Assembly best serve our audiences and what can it offer to the Mid-Atlantic’s art scene overall? Or, more simply, what is a regional biennial exhibition and what can it do? Assembly will present a survey of artwork from the MidAtlantic, highlighting a selection that is broader in scope than a thematic exhibition, but also provides some thematic and aesthetic connections for viewers to follow. The shape an exhibition takes is formed in no small part by the way the artists are selected. The artists in Assembly 2019 were chosen from an open call that attracted more than 250 submissions and was open to artists living and working in Virginia, the District of Columbia, Maryland, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. Although small non-profit organizations like AAC often rely on open calls in order to select artists for exhibitions it is, of course, not the only possibility. AAC relies on a mix of selection processes for its exhibitions, with artists for the SOLOS program selected by outside jurors, in conversation with AAC staff, and artists for thematic group exhibitions typically invited by AAC’s curator. The choice to hold an open call for Assembly 2019 was an attempt to cast a wide net, to find artists who might lay beyond my own network. It also meant relying on the applications we received as I began to think about threads and commonalities, whether aesthetic or thematic. While open calls provide a certain level of transparency and fairness, they also have their own limitations. For Assembly 2019, the artist pool was notably tilted towards areas in close proximity to AAC – Virginia, DC, and Maryland. This may suggest that artists who are closer and potentially more familiar with AAC as an organization were more likely to take a chance on participating in an ambitious new program. The result is an exhibition that gives an overview of our particular corner of the Mid-Atlantic, stretching from Baltimore to DC and through Virginia. For the inaugural exhibition, this tighter geographic focus allows us to home in on the work being done closer to AAC. For future incarnations of Assembly, we’ll need to consider how to negotiate bringing together a wider pool of artists, whether through partnerships


with other organizations, collaborations with other curators, or more direct outreach to artists. Followers of the area art scene will recognize familiar names and also discover some new faces as they view the exhibition. The inclusion of artists who have worked in the area for decades alongside those who are relatively new to the region was a deliberate choice, made to acknowledge the importance of both groups to the liveliness of the Mid-Atlantic’s arts communities. Similarly, the exhibition features young and emerging artists alongside artists with longstanding and established practices. The resulting selection both acknowledges long-term trends and infuses new ideas, ways of working, and artistic talent into the conversation. In addition to having a geographic focus, Assembly 2019 also exists in a particular moment in time and hopes to provide viewers with an overview of work that is not simply being made now but also seems particularly relevant to this moment. That is an often-stated goal of contemporary art exhibitions, but is a claim that shouldn’t be made lightly during what is, by any measure, an extraordinary and overwhelming moment. It is also a goal that must be shaped by an understanding that few artists are making work in response to the latest news cycle. Artists develop work over years or even decades, focusing deeply on particular topics or material explorations. This long-term commitment doesn’t occlude a desire to make work that deals with politics, power relations, or broader social issues. But it may require us to take a broader view of what it means for artwork to be “political.” Several of the artists in Assembly 2019 have a long-term interest in topics and issues that have taken on added prominence and significance since the 2016 election. Their work acts, in part, as a reminder that questions of identity, exclusion, immigration, and the threat that white supremacy poses to multiracial democracy in the United States pre-date the current moment of crisis. Gina Gwen Palacios is a Baltimore-based artist who grew up in South Texas in a Mexican-American family with roots in the state that go back generations. Drawing on old family photographs and incorporating nontraditional materials, Palacios highlights and celebrates an underrepresented cultural and geographic narrative. Khánh H. Lê and chanan delivuk have also taken a long-term interest in their own family histories. In both cases, these histories are immigration stories which are both uniquely personal and a reminder of the centrality of immigration, displacement, and forced migration to the history of our country. Like Palacios, these artists have been immersed in the histories they explore for many years. While their work may take on a new urgency to audiences in this particular moment, they draw on a deep commitment to and exploration of themes that have resonated with them for many years. For some artists in the exhibition, this particular political moment has had a direct impact, either on their work overall or on the direction of specific pieces. The 2016 election and its aftermath caused Lillian Bayley Hoover to reconsider


the landscapes she was creating. She started using thin white glazes to cover over, obscure, or restrict particular aspects of her paintings, channeling her own shock and anxiety over the state of the country into the physical environments in her work. Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin has explored questions of immigration and identity in her work for some time, but her work for Assembly 2019 directly addresses the current immigration crisis, specifically efforts by humanitarian groups to provide assistance to migrants who risk their lives crossing the wide expanses of desert between Arizona and Mexico, and the commitment of Customs and Border Protection to shutting down those efforts. The divergent approach artists take to addressing a long-running crisis like climate change is visible in Assembly 2019 as well. In her performances and the sculptural objects she creates, Katie Kehoe deals with the topic head on, while utilizing both humor and absurdity to initiate dialogue. Bradley Chriss’ paintings materialize a chaotic energy that speaks to the simultaneously urgent and slowmoving crises we are all navigating. In landscapes that feel alternately ethereal and grounded, Magnolia Laurie incorporates imagery drawn from recent events with influences from the history of landscape painting. The art historical legacy of the DC area is also on view in Assembly 2019. Since the postwar era, painting has had an especially strong presence on the art scene in Washington and its surroundings. The strong selection of paintings in the exhibition suggests the ongoing impact of that history, as well as the strength of the painting program at nearby Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Work by Wilfred Brunner points to the ongoing importance of artists in the region who have built their practice as painters over many years, while McKinley Wallace III suggests the ways that younger artists are harnessing the history of painting to address contemporary concerns. Assembly 2019 highlights the wide-ranging interests and efforts of artists working in the Mid-Atlantic, while bringing together several aesthetic and conceptual threads, including formal explorations of the boundary between abstraction and representation and a thematic interest in place and migration. These areas of interest are only a small snapshot of the concerns artists are working through today, but they provide especially ripe ground for exploration for the artists of Assembly 2019. The strength of their work and its ability to speak to our present moment represents the commitment to both formal exploration and thematic depth. The work they’ve generously shared for this exhibition is both an exciting selection of what artists are making now and a strong foundation for AAC’s biennial in years to come. Blair Murphy Curator of Exhibitions


Kara Braciale

In paintings, installations, and new media work, Kara Braciale uses patterns, ideas, décor, languages and systems as symbolic stand-ins for the systems of authority that govern access to different types of spaces, including private, public, and virtual environments. Braciale’s project for Assembly 2019, thisautonomous.zone, exists in multiple locations and formats. From the url thisautonomous.zone a digital animation weaves a pattern based on a translation of the binary code for the phrase “This is an autonomous zone.” The binary-code inspired pattern has also been printed on textiles which are on display in the gallery. Visitors to AAC are welcome to use these textiles on AAC’s grounds and throughout its spaces. During the run of the exhibition, Braciale is partnering with groups and individuals to use the textiles, including for off-site events like performances, picnics, and classes. Exploring the concept and possibility of personal autonomy and our ability to create our own spaces free of coercion, Braciale asks viewers to consider how autonomy might function in different spaces, whether in real life or online, and how our ability to govern our own lives and decision-making can be limited by our environment. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Kara Braciale is an artist based in Northern Virginia. Her work has been shown across the United States, including at the Great Space@UIC (Chicago, IL), Cost Annex (Boston, MA), Regina Rex (New York, NY), Walter Feldman Gallery (Boston, MA), SOFA Gallery (Austin, TX), the Artists Foundation Gallery (South Boston, MA), and Riverside Arts Center (Riverside, IL) among other venues. She was founding co-director of Proof Gallery (Boston, MA) and has taught at Northeastern University, Lesley University, and University of Illinois-Chicago. Braciale holds an MFA from University of Illinois-Chicago and a BA from University of Chicago.


thisautonomous.zone 2019 Mixed media 45 x 45 in


Wilfred Brunner

In his most recent work, Wilfred Brunner continues his exploration of the boundaries and tensions between abstraction and representation. In paintings depicting individual objects, signs, and symbols floating free on complex fields of color, Brunner cultivates a visual tension between the depth and softness of his ground and the flatness and harsh lines of the objects he depicts. In these representations of objects, Brunner reduces their visual complexity, seeking out the simplest combination of line and shape that can still communicate form. In Little Transport, simple lines and shapes combine to communicate a clear outline of a boat. In Memo, a field of light red, nested within another, darker field, contains simple outlines and geometric shapes. As the viewer looks closer, the lines and shapes transform into objects and the light red field begins to reference a tabletop. Through simple gestures, the viewer’s perspective is transformed. Rather than looking at a canvas on a wall, they might now imagine themselves floating in space, their gaze pointed down at the ground. By mining the tension between the representation of real objects and the depiction of abstract forms, Brunner questions and expands upon the communicative possibilities of painting itself. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Since his first exhibition at Hardart in Washington, DC in 1975, Wilfred Brunner has exhibited extensively, including in solo exhibitions at PASS Gallery (Washington, DC), Shepherd University (Shepherdstown, WV), McIntosh Drysdale (Washington, DC), and The Corcoran Gallery of Art (Washington, DC) and group exhibitions at The Huntington Museum of Art (Huntington, WV), Site:Brooklyn (Brooklyn, NY), American University Museum at the Katzen (Washington, DC), Present Company (Brooklyn, NY), and Black Rock Center for the Arts (Germantown, MD), among many other venues. His work is held in public and private collections including The Baltimore Museum of Art, The Phillips Collection, and American University Museum at the Katzen.


SAIEW 2016 Oil on canvas 12 x 12 in Little Transport 2016 Oil on canvas 8 x 24 in


Bradley Chriss

In paintings and performances, Bradley Chriss demolishes the boundary between the corporeal and the sublime. His most recent series of paintings incorporates landscapes with human and animal bodies, evoking bliss and destruction, danger and pleasure, the earthly and the celestial. In these hallucinatory scenes, otherworldy conflagrations are frozen in a moment of chaotic creation or, potentially, destruction. Imagining the collapse of the body into the world (or perhaps the world into the body), Chriss’ paintings vibrate with energy. The colors and mark-making in the work evoke both exuberance and violence. Animals, people, body parts, and plants move into, through, and past one another in landscapes beneath blaring suns, threatening clouds, and hypercolor rainstorms. In God’s Maw Ensnared by Its Own Spectacle, a set of human teeth seem to gaze lovingly up at a collection of human fingers circling an eye. The artist imagines the paintings as an amalgamation of metaphor and our contemporary moment, including the dangers of global warming, the media simulacrum, the resurrection myth, the bliss of nature and the very nature of time itself. Chriss’ work is beautiful but unnerving, alternating between unending possibility and imminent peril. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Bradley Chriss has staged performances and exhibited his work at venues across the United States and around the world including at After MAF Festival (Roanoke, VA), American University Museum at the Katzen (Washington, DC), Transformer Gallery (Washington, DC), Gavin Brown’s Enterprise @ Passerby (New York, NY), Green Papaya Art Projects (Quezon City, Philippines), Eyebeam (New York, NY), Transmodern Festival (Baltimore, MD), and IA&A at Hillyer (Washington, DC). Chriss holds an MFA from American University and a BFA from Columbus College of Art and Design.


God’s Maw Ensnared by Its Own Spectacle (detail) 2019 Gouache on paper 18 x 26 in


Shannon Collis + Liz Donadio

Singular Space, an installation created by Shannon Collis and Liz Donadio, addresses contemporary issues around access and use of urban environments through a multifaceted portrait of Forum Fountain, a Brutalist-inspired public sculpture located behind Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in East Baltimore. Designed in 1975, Forum Fountain was funded through Baltimore’s % for Art Program with the intention of creating a meditative and communal space for students. Though facing neglect and the general backlash against and misinterpretation of Brutalist design, the work still stands as an important part of the school’s history and the legacy and importance of municipal sculpture. Collis and Donadio spent a year documenting the fountain, utilizing digital video, drone cinematography, photography, and audio recording to produce a multi-dimensional portrait of the site and its surroundings. Challenging perceptions of the built environment, Singular Space captures the essence and physicality of municipal art, viewing it through an abstract lens and connecting it with the urban landscape. It is a reminder that public space is mutable but cannot be erased even in the face of continual destruction or neglect. ABOUT THE ARTISTS: As collaborators, Shannon Collis and Liz Donadio bring together backgrounds in photography, digital video, and sound art to create immersive environments with innovative technologies. Previous collaborations have been exhibited and screened at Institute of Contemporary Art (Baltimore, MD), Current Space (Baltimore, MD), The Walters Art Museum (Baltimore, MD), and InLight Richmond (Richmond, VA). Collis is an Associate Professor in the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park. She earned a BDes and an MFA from the University of Alberta and a Graduate Certificate in Digital Technologies from Concordia University. Donadio holds an MFA from Towson University and a BFA from SUNY Purchase. She is an Assistant Professor of Photography at Northern Virginia Community College, Woodbridge Campus.


Singular Space: ICA Baltimore 2019 Digital video projection mapped onto various sculptural forms, 5.1 Surround sound Dimensions variable


chanan delivuk

Through photographs, video, and personally collected artifacts, chanan delivuk documents her family connection to Delivuki, Croatia, the small village where her paternal ancestors once lived. Since haphazardly finding the village on a trip several years ago, the artist has cultivated relationships with distant relatives in Croatia and the United States, building an archive and a network across geography, national boundaries, and time. The artist recently returned to the village, meeting additional relatives, spending time with those sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s met before, and conducting additional research into her family history. In photographs and videos, delivuk appears alongside distant Croatian relatives, conducting halting conversations with Google translate or with the help of English-speaking relatives. Milan, the relative delivuk met on her initial visit to the village, appears repeatedly throughout the project. He becomes a compelling character and builds a relationship with delivuk across the boundaries of language, time, culture, and geography. In the video untitled, meal with milan delivuk, he sits just off camera, next to a plate of crepes, which he encourages his companions to eat. Inspired by the hospitality and generosity she experienced in Croatia, delivuk accompanies installations of the project with a presentation of Croatian food, including crepes and Turkish coffee, bringing visitors a sample of her experiences in the country. ABOUT THE ARTIST: chanan delivukâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s previous exhibitions include solo shows at <terminal> gallery (Clarksville, TN), Current Gallery (Baltimore, MD), IA&A at Hillyer (Washington, DC), and Lighthole Gallery (Baltimore, MD) and group exhibitions at Mitchell Gallery (Annapolis, MD), EMP Collective (Baltimore, MD), and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Blacksburg, VA). She holds an MFA in Intermedia and Digital Arts from University of Maryland, Baltimore County and an MFA in New Media from The George Washington University.


untitled, delivuki, croatia 2019 Digital pigment print 7 ½ x 10 in


Lillian Bayley Hoover

Lillian Bayley Hoover’s paintings explore the banal, awkward, overlooked, and imperfect elements of our material environment. In her most recent work, landscapes are interrupted and obscured by flat planes of grays, browns, and blacks. These neutral fields introduce a sense of foreboding and interrupt the artist’s realistic depictions of pristine clouds, skies, and landscapes. They deny the viewer access to portions of the scenes, suggesting enclosure, uncertainty, and destruction. In some works, the neutral planes act as a frame, creating a composition that leaves viewers one step removed from the landscape itself. In other works, flat planes of color intrude into the landscapes, creating the impression of a space being neutralized, subsumed, or covered over. Beyond interrupting or concealing one section of the scene, the fields intrude into the very reality of the landscapes, interrupting the representational work of the image. In one instance, these are landscapes under threat, surrounded by abstracted forces of destruction. In another, they are exposed as fantasies, evoking all the anxiety and despair that results from a once familiar landscape being exposed as a fraud. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Lillian Bayley Hoover’s recent solo exhibitions include In This World at BlackRock Center for the Arts (Germantown, MD), Holding Space at Goya Contemporary (Baltimore, MD), and Borders at Louisiana Tech University (Ruston, LA). Her work has been included in group exhibitions at American University Museum at the Katzen (Washington, DC), Museum della Carta e della (Filigrana, Italy), McLean Project for the Arts (McLean, VA), Gallery B (Bethesda, MD), and Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art (Aichi, Japan), among other venues. She holds an MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art and a BFA from University of North Carolina, Asheville.


Untitled 2018 Oil on panel 18 x 18 in


Katie Kehoe

Katie Kehoe creates object-based performances and sitespecific installations, often incorporating duration, social engagement, and adaptive reuse of materials. Embracing the absurd to engage the everyday, Kehoe produces scenarios that invite conversation and dialogue with the public. Her performance series Provisions for Buoyancy: on the East Coast, involved eighteen durational performances in ten US states and two Canadian provinces. During the performances, Kehoe, wearing a wetsuit and carrying a bodyboard, walked for extended periods through areas that will be flooded if the sea level rises by six feet. Recent studies have found that six feet of sea level rise may be reached by 2100 if efforts aren’t made to combat climate change. Kehoe’s seemingly inappropriate attire and props act as catalysts for interactions with passers-by prompting conversations about sea level rise, extreme weather, and flooding. The bodyboard used for the performance is one of several sculptural objects created by Kehoe from salvaged materials. The sculptures, including Paddle Board and Life Ring, all evoke the necessity to prepare for unexpected flooding and the importance of reuse and resourcefulness as we face down environmental catastrophe. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Katie Kehoe was raised in Cape Breton, Novia Scotia and currently lives in Fredericksburg, VA. She teaches at Virginia Commonwealth University and George Mason University. Her work has been exhibited across the United States and Canada. Highlights include: The Contemporary Museum (Baltimore, MD), Center for Maine Contemporary Art (Rockland, ME), RedLine Contemporary (Denver, CO), (e)merge art fair (Washington, DC), SummerWorks Festival - LiveArt Series (Toronto, ON) as well as solo exhibitions at VisArts (Rockville, MD), Verso Gallery and Type Books Gallery (Toronto, CAN). Kehoe holds an MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and a BA Hons from Saint Mary’s University.


Provisions for Buoyancy: on the East Coast, East Potomac Park 1, Washington, DC 2018 Photograph, documentation from a 4hr performance action Photographed by Susanna Lee 24 x 36 in


Dean Kessmann

Dean Kessmann is a photographer whose work explores the relationships between abstraction and representation, physical objects and digital information, compression and expansion. After many years of working in the studio, experimenting with methods of image creation that eschewed cameras and other markers of straight photography, Kessmann returned to the urban landscape. Wandering through the city, open to any and all situations, Kessmann rediscovered the sense of exploration that drove his desire to make photographs as a young artist. In his most recent body of work, Kessmann crafts a visual world from the overlooked corners of the urban landscape. In images that verge on total abstraction, Kessmann focuses in on light, color, and form, constructing compositions from spray-painted concrete, empty storefronts, and street-side landscaping. Taking a broader view, he presents recognizable urban scenes, framed and captured to accentuate their formal qualities. Utilizing a keen eye, Kessmann documents a particular time and place while presenting a fascinating exploration of an urban environment. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Dean Kessmannâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s work has been exhibited extensively across the United States, including in solo exhibitions at William Shearburn Gallery (St. Louis, MO), Furthermore (Washington, DC), Orlando Museum of Art (Orlando, FL), and Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, PA). His exhibitions have been reviewed in a variety of publications, including Art Papers, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and ARTFORUM. His work is included in public and private collections including Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington, DC), Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN), Baltimore Museum of Art (Baltimore, MD), The Phillips Collection (Washington, DC), and Museum of Contemporary Photography, Columbia College (Chicago, IL). Kessmann is an Associate Professor of Photography at The George Washington University.


Untitled (1175) 2018 Archival pigment print 9 ½ x 7 ½ inches


Magnolia Laurie

Magnolia Laurie’s paintings reference the conflicting visual vocabulary that marks the land we live on and utilize— landmarks of protection, destruction, progress, and waste. In landscapes devoid of human figures, Laurie introduces fragments of the built environment as both literal evidence and metaphor for human impact. Taking inspiration from both the landscape tradition and images of current events, Laurie introduces the terror and awe associated with the sublime into a 21st century context marked by wildfires, flooding, and other disasters. In additional works, borders, fences, and other framing devices denote division, proximity, and distance, representing the weaponization of the landscape as a tool for sociopolitical conflict. Viewing the natural landscape as a space that is already defined and shaped by mankind and our conflicts, Laurie’s scenes are inextricably linked to our current moment of severe weather, environmental crisis, and resource conflicts. The work’s visual tension evokes our own troubled relationship with the environment, both considering our impact on the landscape and imagining what the aftermath of that impact might look like. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Magnolia Laurie’s work has been exhibited in solo shows at The Spite House (Philadelphia, PA), frosch & portmann (New York, NY), The Phillips Museum of Art, Franklin & Marshall College (Lancaster, PA), and Hamiltonian Gallery (Washington, DC) and group exhibitions at MONO Practice (Baltimore, MD), Little Berlin (Philadelphia, PA), Addison/ Ripley Gallery (Washington, DC), Hemphill Gallery at Carroll Square (Washington, DC), and The Baltimore Museum of Art (Baltimore, MD), among other venues. She has participated in residencies across the United States including at Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (Amherst, VA) and Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT).


a shift in temperature and temperament 2018 Graphite, oil paint, ground shells, and sea salt on panel 24 x 12 in


Khánh H. Lê

Khánh H. Lê transforms family photos to create new historical narratives using gold gelly roll pens, sequins, and acrylic crystals, while drawing on influences from design, minimalism, photography, and the history of abstract painting. The images he uses are drawn from his own family history, including the experiences he and his loved ones had fleeing Vietnam for refugee camps in Thailand before immigrating to the United States. Both Going Out For a Swim and Their New Bedroom include images from the refugee camps, specifically focusing on special moments and joyful experiences that took place for the pictured children, even as they faced the challenges and struggles of displacement. Through the use of nontraditional materials, including those that are devalued due to their association with scrapbooking and other craft activities, Lê cultivates a freedom that allows him to create fantastical new visions from family memories. In more recent works, Lê combines the bright, even garish, colors of acrylic jewels with mottled grey, a reference to the deterioration of his source photographs. Lê’s works are an act of both reclamation and preservation, boldly reimagining and celebrating the lives of his family members and his own lived experience of cultural contradiction, fragmentation, and reinvention. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Khánh H. Lê was born in Mỹ Tho, Vietnam and, as a child, lived in a refugee camp in Thailand before immigrating with his family to the United States. He has had solo exhibitions at Mount St. Mary’s University Art Gallery (Emmitsburg, MD), D’Arte Gallery (New York, NY), IA&A at Hillyer (Washington, DC), and DC Arts Center (Washington, DC) and his work has been exhibited in group exhibitions at the Korean Cultural Center (Washington, DC), Site: Brooklyn (Brooklyn, NY), Waller Gallery and Gallery CA (Baltimore, MD), Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts (Wilmington, NJ), Terrault Gallery (Baltimore, MD), and Field Projects (New York, NY).


A Brave New World for Him 2018 Gold and silver paint, acrylic jewels, glitter, sequins, silk-screening, and archival print on wood panel 42 x 30 in


Gina Gwen Palacios

Drawing on her family history and Mexican-American identity, Gina Gwen Palacios uses traditional and non-traditional materials, including paint, cardboard, cotton, and sandpaper, to highlight an often underrepresented geographic and cultural narrative. Growing up in South Texas, Palacios absorbed her parents’ stories about the discrimination they experienced in the region, including being punished for speaking Spanish, having their first names anglicized, and being forced out of school. Although vast expanses of the southwestern United States were part of Mexico until 1836, Mexican American families who have deep roots in the area are treated as outsiders, as usurpers of the land and resources their families have occupied, in many cases, for generations. Drawing on family photos, Palacios creates portraits of her family’s history, using colors and materials that emphasize their connection to their surroundings and the long cultural lineage of which they are a part. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Gina Gwen Palacios was born in Taft, Texas. She earned an MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design, an MA from The University of Texas at Austin, and a BA from Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi. She currently holds an AICAD Post Graduate Teaching Fellowship at Maryland Institute College of Art and recently participated in Santa Fe Art Institute’s 2019 Residency focused on Truth & Reconciliation. Her work has been exhibited across the country including at Rosenberg Gallery, Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore, MD), Five Points Museum of Contemporary Art (Victoria, TX), Asya Geisberg Gallery (New York, NY), Villa Victoria Center for the Arts (Boston, MA), List Art Center, Brown University (Providence, RI), Morgan Lehman Gallery (New York, NY), and Austin Art Space (Austin, TX).


Cotton-Pickinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; 2018 Wood, hand-carved cardboard, stand oil, and sandpaper 76 x 44 x 4 in


Judith Pratt

Judith Pratt’s installation connects history, identity, and topography, using the landscape of Central Virginia, where the artist was born and grew up, as a starting point. Located 100 miles west of Washington, DC, the Piedmont region combines expansive natural beauty with a turbulent history that includes centuries of chattel slavery, brutal Civil War battles, and the ongoing impact of racism and white supremacy. In her tightly-composed drawings and sculptural forms crafted from paper, Pratt foregrounds the symbolic possibilities of abstraction. The drawings reference topographical maps, abstract representations meant to communicate information about a particular place. For her cut paper pieces, Pratt works with Lenox 100 paper, a material made entirely of domestic cotton. She delicately cuts and forms the material, exploring the symbolic possibilities of this straightforward process. Specters hang from the wall into sculptural forms, simultaneously fragile and domineering, while Hide (right) folds in on itself, forming elegant lines and sculptural shapes. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Judith Pratt holds an MFA from American University and an MA in Modern and Contemporary Art History from Christie’s New York, and served as a curatorial assistant at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York. She has had solo exhibitions at IA&A at Hillyer (Washington, DC), Second Street Gallery (Charlottesville, VA), and at the Crescent Gallery (Tysons, VA) and her work has been included in group exhibitions at Brentwood Arts Exchange (Brentwood, MD), McLean Project for the Arts (McLean, VA), Red West Contemporary (Steamboat Springs, CO), Glen Echo Gallery (Glen Echo, MD), The Workhouse Arts Center (Lorton, VA), and Athenaeum Museum (Alexandria, VA). She has participated in residencies with the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in Amherst, VA and Moulin à Nef, Auvillar, France and at the University of Virginia Mountain Lake Biological Station in Pembroke, VA. She lives and works in Central Virginia and the DC area.


Hide 2018 Acrylic paint, acrylic ink and Lenox 100 paper 9 x 4 ft


Sarah G. Sharp

Sarah G. Sharp is a multidisciplinary, research-based artist whose work addresses identity, land, domesticity, communication, and communalism. In KinShip, she combines commercially produced “camouflage” fabrics with geometric, digitally-produced embroideries that reference sacred geometry and other “spiritual” schematics. While teaching in Southern Maryland, Sharp encountered an abundance of “camo” and “nature” print material in commercial fabric stores. These materials are a point of entry for considering the complex “kinships” that develop amongst communities that live and work at the edges of rural spaces as well as for examining the ways that relationship to “natural” spaces intersect with aspects of identity, especially gender and sexuality. Sharp’s consideration of kinship draws on theorist Donna Haraway’s reimagining of “kin” as a framework for rethinking human relationships to one another and to nonhuman animals, offering new ways of being together to navigate this age of environmental catastrophe. Combining these materials with spiritual imagery, Sharp explores groups who are rarely considered in relation to one another but who cultivate close relationships with others and with their surroundings, in part through material goods that contain complex symbolic meaning. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Sarah G. Sharp is the recipient of a Getty Library Research Grant, Brooklyn Arts Council Grant, BRIC Arts Media Fellowship, Bronx Museum AIM Fellowship and residency awards at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tucson, SoHo20 Gallery Residency Lab, Brooklyn and The Vermont Studio Center. Previous exhibitions include Institute for Contemporary Art (Baltimore, MD), The Aldrich Museum (Ridgefield, CT), LMAK Gallery (New York, NY), and Field Projects (New York, NY). Sharp holds an MFA in studio art and an MA in Modern and Contemporary Art, Criticism and Theory from Purchase College, SUNY. Her work has been covered in Hyperallergic, ArtForum, Kind Aesthetic Quarterly, and The New York Times. She is an Assistant Professor at University of Maryland Baltimore County.


KinShip Triangle 2019 Chambray, â&#x20AC;&#x153;wood grainâ&#x20AC;? cotton fabric, digital embroidery, and linen backing 43 x 41 in


Molly Springfield

Molly Springfield creates graphite drawings that use printed text as their source material, exploring the history of information and representation. In recent work, she has considered the process of transcription and the development of modernism through the writings and photography of Virginia Woolf. The Waves is one of several works based on photocopies of Woolf’s marginal emendations in holograph draft copies of To the Lighthouse and The Waves, two of Woolf’s seminal modernist texts. In the holograph draft copies of the book, Woolf’s notes, corrections, and changes are included in the margins and in the text, giving the reader a sense of the development of the book and the author’s working process. Focusing in on particular phrases, Springfield extracts and enlarges the pages by photocopying and re-photocopying, transforming the text into poetic fragments. The physical form of the book—the blurry fan of page edges against the photocopier glass, the seam of the gutter—remains evident in the panels. The drawings are meditations on the text but also on the book form itself and its role in the creation of information. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Molly Springfield has had thirteen national and international solo exhibitions, including shows in New York; Washington, DC; San Francisco; Chicago; and Cologne, Germany. Museum exhibitions include The Baltimore Museum of Art (Baltimore, MD), Berkeley Art Museum (Berkeley, CA), Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard University (Boston, MA), The Drawing Center (New York, NY), Hafnarborg Museum (Hafnarborg, Iceland), Indianapolis Museum of Art (Indianapolis, IN), and Portland Museum of Art (Portland, OR). Reviews of her work have appeared in Artforum, Art Papers, Modern Painters, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Village Voice, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, and Chicago Tribune. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. She received her MFA from the University of California, Berkeley in 2004, was a participant at Skowhegan in 2006, and was a MacDowell Fellow in 2016.


The Waves (detail) 2018 Graphite on paper 6 x 12 ft


McKinley Wallace III

In his mixed-media paintings, McKinley Wallace III builds layered depictions of urban landscapes, adeptly harnessing material and formal strategies to create compositions that challenge dominant narratives about Baltimore and its residents. Wallace’s depictions focus on isolated objects or nearly empty cityscapes. When people do appear, they appear off in the corner or are partially obscured, rather than being the center of attention. In Washington Boulevard, Wallace combines photo collage, charcoal, and paint on canvas to depict a block in the Baltimore neighborhood of Morrell Park. Two men, one black and one white, are the only human presence in the scene, tucked in the bottom right corner of the composition. Their intention is difficult to discern – are they greeting one another as friends or approaching one another aggressively? In other pieces, Wallace focuses on individual objects and symbols, depicting an unseen figure in a Baltimore police uniform, for example, or a lone figure obscured by a hoodie. In all of his work, Wallace gestures towards the material and physical experience of racism and racist violence in America, the way it is built into the environment that black Americans navigate on a daily basis. ABOUT THE ARTIST: McKinley Wallace’s work has been included in solo exhibitions at Gallery CA (Baltimore, MD), Amalie Rothschild Gallery at Creative Alliance (Baltimore, MD), Jubilee Arts (Baltimore, MD), and Piano Gallery, Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore, MD) and in group exhibitions at Terrault Gallery (Baltimore, MD), ArtReach Gallery at THEARC (Washington, DC), and Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts (Annapolis, MD). Wallace has worked as a teaching artist with Access Art Inc (Baltimore, MD), Baltimore Youth Arts (Baltimore, MD), and Interlochen Center for the Arts (Interlochen, MI). He earned a BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art and has held fellowships with the MICA Office of Community Engagement, Young Audiences Arts for Learning Maryland, and Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance.


Washington Blvd (detail) 2019 Acrylic, charcoal, and digital prints on wood panel 35 x 52 in


Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin

In her cage sculptures, including Orange Cage-Immigrant Loops, Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin uses non-traditional and synthetic materials to point to the divisions created by systems of oppression, power, and control. Yurcisin’s new sculptural installation references the jugs of water left in the Arizona desert by humanitarian groups to provide relief to migrants making the dangerous journey into the United States across desolate and isolated terrain. According to the non-profit Humane Borders, more than 3,000 migrants died between 1998 and 2018 while attempting the crossing, primarily from dehydration or exposure. Border Patrol has cracked down on groups who offer relief to migrants and CBP Officers have been recorded emptying out the jugs of water. The cluster of concrete sculptures in Yurcisin’s installation were cast in the form of gallon jugs. They replace the lightness and transparency of the empty plastic jugs with the heavy, grey materiality of concrete. The weight of the objects, as well as the smooth, cold concrete surface, evokes the cruelty of a system that would condemn migrants to death for the act of seeking a better life. ABOUT THE ARTIST: Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin was born in México City. She received a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BA from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, México. She has received grants, residencies, and awards from the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Her work has been exhibited in the United States, México, and Europe including in solo and group exhibitions at VisArts (Rockville, MD), Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Center (Washington, DC), DC Arts Center (Washington, DC), Brentwood Arts Exchange (Brentwood, MD), Sandy Spring Museum (Sandy Spring, MD), Salzlandmuseum (Schönebeck, Germany), Olly Olly (Fairfax, VA), Workhouse Arts Center (Lorton, VA), and Paseo del Carmen (Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico).


Orange Cage-Immigrant Loops 2018 White steel cage, orange iridescent ribbon, double-sided adhesive tape, mirror, wood rods, vinyl letters, and LED lights 31 ½ x 19 x 53 ž in


WYATT RESIDENT ARTISTS GALLERY

MARISSA LONG: BORROWED FROM DUST Borrowed from Dust is a meditation on memory, loss, and impermanence. In her sculpture, photographs, and mixedmedia works, Marissa Long utilizes visual and material symbols of obfuscation and mourning. The veil, a central theme in the exhibition, evokes mourning but also masking and concealment. It references the line between life and death, public and private, knowledge and mystery. The veil manifests as a literal cloth garment, and also resonates in the show’s visual tropes, including in pools of darkness and mirrored surfaces which impede attempts at clear sight. Attempting to visualize what we’re unable to see, the work in the exhibition explores our strategies for understanding the incomprehensible. Without being able to fully comprehend death and loss, we translate our emotions through objects, totems, and myths. The familiar objects in Borrowed from Dust – flowers, candles, household ephemera - seem positioned in a state slightly out of reach. Blocked, buried, or fading from view, our understanding of them moves away from their innate physicality and is shaped by our own instinctive attempts to view them plainly. Our past is transfigured by memory, which is both an intimate, meaningful function of our own minds, and an unreliable narrator, crystalizing the distortions of our subjective experience.

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Marissa Long is an Arlington, VA-based artist, and became a resident at Arlington Arts Center in 2017. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at venues including Civilian Art Projects (Washington, DC), Transformer (Washington, DC), Washington Project for the Arts (Washington, DC), Cell Project Space (London, UK), Deutscher Kuenstlerbund (Berlin, Germany), Blank Projects (Cape Town, South Africa), and American University Museum at the Katzen (Washington, DC). Her work has been covered by various publications, including The Washington Post and Washington City Paper. Long holds a BFA from Corcoran College of Art & Design.


Echo Chamber (detail) 2019 Wood, plexi, silk flowers, paint, resin, and LED lighting 58 x 12 x 12 in


ABOUT Arlington Arts Center (AAC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit contemporary visual arts center dedicated to presenting and supporting new work by regional artists in the Mid-Atlantic states. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and subsidized studio spaces, AAC serves as a bridge between artists and the public. The goal is to increase awareness, appreciation of, and involvement in, the visual arts in Arlington County, VA and the region. AAC was established in 1974 and has been housed since 1976 in the historic Maury School. Our facility includes nine exhibition galleries, a large lawn suitable for public art, working studios for twelve artists, and three classrooms. At 17,000 square feet, AAC is one of the largest non-federal venues for contemporary art in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

EXHIBITIONS Through quarterly changing exhibitions, AAC serves as a launching pad for emerging artists, provides established artists with the opportunity to experiment, and offers the public a snapshot of the region’s most compelling contemporary art. AAC’s exhibitions and attendant lectures, workshops, and panel discussions offer opportunities for dialogue, and ultimately serve to illustrate the value of contemporary art – specifically, what it is and why it matters in our daily lives.

EDUCATION AAC offers a stimulating schedule of year-round art classes for novice and seasoned artists of all ages, from toddlers to adults. Taught by experienced professional artists, AAC’s classes are small, scheduled around the school and work day, and tuition is affordable. AAC’s art students have access to the excellent contemporary art in our galleries to help stimulate and inspire their own efforts.

RESIDENT ARTIST PROGRAM AAC’s resident artist program provides subsidized studio space in a supportive environment that encourages interaction, dialogue, and exploration. Residents become part of a creative community that enables them to exchange ideas, engage in meaningful conversation, and expand their practice.


HOURS + LOCATION Arlington Arts Center is open free to the public Wed - Sun, 12 - 5 pm Metro: Silver & Orange Lines: Virginia Square 3550 Wilson Boulevard Arlington, VA 22201 703 248 6800 For more info about AAC visit: www.arlingtonartscenter.org

STAFF EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Holly Koons / director@arlingtonartscenter.org

CURATOR OF EXHIBITIONS Blair Murphy / exhibitions@arlingtonartscenter.org

EDUCATION COORDINATOR Lia Ferro / education@arlingtonartscenter.org

MARKETING COORDINATOR Laura Devereux / information@arlingtonartscenter.org

SPONSORS + PARTNERS Our programs are made possible through the generous support of the The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation; Arlington County through the Arlington Cultural Affairs division of Arlington Economic Development and the Arlington Commission for the Arts; the Virginia Commission for the Arts/ National Endowment for the Arts; the Washington Forrest Foundation; and generous individual donors.

IMAGE CREDITS: COVER: SHANNON COLLIS + LIZ DONADIO, SINGULAR SPACE: ICA BALTIMORE PAGE 3: DEAN KESSMAN, UNTITLED (582); PAGE 5: LILLIAN BAYLEY HOOVER, UNTITLED


3550 WILSON BLVD / ARLINGTON, VA 22201 ARLINGTONARTSCENTER.ORG / 703 248 6800

Profile for Arlington Arts Center

Arlington Arts Center - Assembly 2019  

Arlington Arts Center - Assembly 2019  

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