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ADHERE


ADHERE


Tirtzah Bassel

Travis Childers

Kayt Hester

Ye Hongxing

Vandana Jain

Hong Seon Jang

Mark Khaisman

Sandra Ono

Johan Rijpma

Heidi van Wieren


ADHERE September 20, 2015 – January 17, 2016

Visual Arts Center of New Jersey


EXPOSING ADHESIVES by Katherine Murdock

Adhesives such as tape and glue are intended to bind objects or fix broken items and commonly remain hidden from view. Instead of masking these materials, the ten artists in Adhere bring adhesives to the forefront, using them as a primary medium, and offering an alternative perspective on traditional art-making materials. What is elsewhere considered a practical office or craft supply is treated here as a fine art medium, repurposed for mark making, surface texture, tonal value and color. Replacing materials such as paint, pencil, clay, or wax, these artists use various tapes, glues and stickers to create their work. They experiment with a variety of materials and techniques to represent narrative and non-narrative art and explore aspects of contemporary culture. Many of the artists acknowledge the pedestrian and practical aspects of adhesives and some may even accentuate these qualities. Mark Khaisman magnifies the contrast between the humble materials he enlists as a medium with the subject matter he depicts. Using aluminum, gaffer and packing tapes, Khaisman depicts antique decorative collectibles such as Oriental carpets and sterling silver referenced from auction catalogue photographs— objects seen as symbols of wealth, prestige and exclusivity. The artist explains, “The use of adhesive tape creates confusion between what is seen and what is experienced. A viewer sees an antique object and at the same time experiences a modern industrial material.� Similarly, Sandra Ono compiles common household cleaning supplies like paper towels and mop heads, transforming them with glue into sculptural forms that look like carved marble. Both artists elevate the ordinary and turn disposable materials into art. Opposite: Mark Khaisman, Antique Serapi Rug 2 (detail), 2012


Kayt Hester and Tirtzah Bassel apply tape directly to the wall to make site-specific compositions that illustrate the body language of people performing ordinary tasks. Drawn with black artist tape, Hester’s The Dreary Commuter depicts an elderly woman in the rain. Huddled under her umbrella with hunched shoulders, the woman tentatively steps across the wet pavement. Hester carefully adheres ripped black tape to the wall and varies the weight of her lines, creating the illusion of a graphic pen and ink drawing on the white wall. With two life-size installations, Bassel also illustrates people whose body language responds to their environments. Bassel is especially interested in how people adhere to the social norms of waiting. The tape painting of four people on the interior of the Art Center’s elevator reveals the tension felt in tight quarters. Utilizing the architecture of the long hallway gallery, Bassel creates a narrative of shoppers stuck in a check-out line. Temporarily stationary, they lean on their carts, clutch their shopping baskets, and look at their phones. Employing tapes of various colors, textures and widths, the artist twists, crumples, and tears them to build up the topography of her surfaces. The resulting textures resemble heavily-impastoed oil paintings. The visceral energy in her wall paintings lends a feeling of immediacy to the works. Heidi van Wieren and Sandra Ono use white glue to create depth in their paintings and sculptures. Van Wieren prepares a wood panel coated with white glue and drips rows of colored ink dots onto the surface. The resulting painting incorporates many layers of ink and glue and suggests atmospheric haze and depth. The artist has acknowledged the influence of the landscape of the South Dakota Badlands on her work. Instead of fabricating a two-dimensional representation of depth, Ono transforms thin paper towels and white liquid glue into a solidified three-dimensional construction. The laminated layers of paper towels and glue resemble geological striations. Heidi van Wieren, Aislesapphire (detail), 2015


Mark Khaisman and Hong Seon Jang rely on tape to create tonal values. By folding and applying layers of translucent packing tape over a light source, Khaisman varies the tonality and color in his imagery. The accumulation of tape controls the amount of light that is able to pass through the surface— more layers create a darker shade. The light in Khaisman’s work emanates from fluorescent bulbs behind the piece. In contrast, Jang begins with a dark chalkboard background and relies on the frostiness of the adhesive backing to lighten tonal value—multiple layers create a lighter tint. His tape lines replace the expected chalk lines and replicate the appearance of ephemeral writing or drawing on a chalkboard. These tape drawings depict ghostly wooded landscapes whose trees and ground are illuminated by a single light source—suggesting the illusion of woods viewed through night vision technology. Ye Hongxing and Travis Childers aggregate hundreds of small individual components to make their collaged composite images. Ye arranges small stickers into a circular composition, a shape that represents perfection in Chinese culture. The stickers resemble the individual pieces of tesserae in a mosaic, providing shading and color. The nestled images crowd each other and keep the eye circulating around the mix of traditional Chinese motifs and pop culture icons. A charging centaur-like creature points to a tropical flower, a domestic cat in a tuxedo sits beside a lion, and a Buddha of Compassion floats above a motorcycle chick who flaunts her hips. Childers presents a myriad of faces taken directly from newspapers. Using tape as an image transfer method, Childers applies tape to a selected image in a newspaper and peels it away, leaving him with a degraded version of the image adhered to the tape. He positions these faded remnants in horizontal strips on paper and canvas.

Ye Hongxing, Another Space No.6 (detail), 2013


Vandana Jain arranges fluorescent and colored masking tape in taut perpendicular lines to draw structured designs on the wall. In contrast to Ye’s and Childer’s collaged surfaces, Jain’s Turn On, Tune Out is a site-specific work that incorporates three large-scale logo designs superimposed over one another. This work is from a series of vibrant tape installations inspired by “dazzle” camouflage techniques. Before the invention of sonar, this method was applied to battleships to disorient enemies by camouflaging speed, direction and size. Borrowing this concept, Jain obscures the trademarks of three entertainment and media companies—logos that are normally intended to be quickly identifiable: Walt Disney Company, Out Brain and Bored Panda. When the logos are compressed into one abstract tape drawing, they shed their individual identities. The artist explains, “In the visual confusion created by the dazzle patterning, the logos lose their distinctiveness, and instead hide in plain sight.” Jain’s supersized logos reference the corporate branding directed at consumers. These logos battle for attention in this work, acting as a metaphor for the competitive nature of the entertainment industry where everyone vies for attention so aggressively that no one gets heard. Jain’s large scale logos appear in sharp contrast to the logos on Ye’s small stickers. A close look uncovers small images referencing popular culture and international companies including DKNY, Prada, Angry Birds, and Winnie the Pooh. These stickers are used as building blocks to construct larger symbols of harmony, religion and war. At human-scale, Bassel’s shoppers represent the consumers of corporate culture. The absence of items in their carts directs attention to the act of shopping rather than any specific items purchased. Leaving an element of mark-making up to chance is a commonality among several of the artists in the show. When Travis Childers sticks tape

Vandana Jain, Turn On, Tune Out (detail), 2015


to a selected image from the newspaper, the image revealed is unknown until the tape is pulled back. The stickiness of the adhesive, the pressure applied, or the type of ink on the newspaper all contribute to the chance fragmented image that is revealed. Heidi van Wieren’s ordering of droplets is premeditated, however the mark is only determined when the droplet of ink lands in the bed of glue. Gravity is a factor that contributes to these chance outcomes. After Johan Rijpma attached one end of a roll of tape to the side of his desk he became fascinated by how gravity caused it to unwind. He explains, “It felt like a great discovery. I had worked with tape for a long time and I never realized that while I was working or sleeping the tape was slowly moving and in a way living its own secret life.” This led to the production of his time-lapse video, Tape Generations. After suspending multiple rolls of transparent tape from a stationary apparatus, he captured the moving patterns they created as gravity caused them to unwind. The reflections on the unwound tape surfaces catch the light like droplets of rain or light from a chandelier. Just as Rijpma’s video uncovers the secret life of tape, this exhibition exposes the hidden identity of adhesives. And just as Rijpma made rolls of tape the starring performers in his film, the artists in Adhere also feature adhesives in leading roles. By highlighting tapes, stickers and glues as primary materials, they exploit the unique qualities of adhesives and increase the viewer’s awareness of adhesive’s potential. These artists offer alternative perspectives on art making by exposing adhesives.

Travis Childers, Blur, 2015


TIRTZAH BASSEL Adhere, 2015

Duct tape, gaffer tape, painters tape, masking tape and artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) Courtesy of the artist


TRAVIS CHILDERS Spaces, 2014

Images of faces lifted off newspaper with masking tape on canvas, gel medium Courtesy of the artist


KAYT HESTER

The Dreary Commuter, 2015

Black artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) Courtesy of the artist


YE HONGXING

Another Space No.6, 2013 Crystal sticker collage Courtesy of the artist and Art Lex誰ng, Miami, FL


VANDANA JAIN

Turn On, Tune Out, 2015

Colored artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) Courtesy of the artist


HONG SEON JANG

Green Forest, 2013 Tape on chalkboard Courtesy of the artist and David B. Smith Gallery, Denver, CO


MARK KHAISMAN

Antique Serapi Rug 2, 2012

Packaging tape on backlit polyester film Courtesy of the artist and Pentimenti Gallery, Philadelphia, PA


SANDRA ONO Untitled, 2011

Mop heads and glue Courtesy of the artist


JOHAN RIJPMA

Tape Generations, 2011

2 minutes 39 seconds, 4:3 (video still) Courtesy of the artist


HEIDI VAN WIEREN Preppy Ray, 2013

PVA, Elmer’s glue and ink Courtesy of the artist and Margret Thatcher Projects, New York, NY


CHECKLIST Tirtzah Bassel

Vandana Jain

Adhere, 2015

Turn On, Tune Out, 2015

Duct tape, gaffer tape, painters tape, masking tape and artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) 95 x 283 inches

Elevator, 2015

Duct tape, gaffer tape, painters tape, masking tape and artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) 80 x 60 inches

Travis Childers Blur, 2015

Colored artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) 125 x 131 inches

Hong Seon Jang Green Forest, 2013 Tape on chalkboard 30 x 40 inches Green Forest, 2013 Tape on chalkboard 30 x 40 inches

Images of faces lifted off newspaper with packing tape on paper, gel medium 72 x 48 inches

All works courtesy of the artist and David B. Smith Gallery, Denver, CO

Spaces, 2014

Mark Khaisman

Images of faces lifted off newspaper with masking tape on canvas, gel medium 30 x 30 inches All works courtesy of the artist

Kayt Hester The Dreary Commuter, 2015

Black artist tape on wall (site-specific installation) 81 x 50 inches

Ye Hongxing Another Space No.6, 2013

Crystal sticker collage 59 x 59 inches Courtesy of the artist and Art Lex誰ng, Miami, FL

Antique Serapi Rug 2, 2012

Packaging tape on backlit polyester film 96 X 48 inches

An English Silver Flatware Set, 2015

Aluminum tape, gaffer tape, Sharpie marker, PVC foam 12 x 16 inches

Five George III Silver Pepper Shakers, 2015 Aluminum tape, gaffer tape, Sharpie marker, PVC foam 8 x 12 inches


A George IV Silver Dinner Plate, 2015

Aluminum tape, gaffer tape, Sharpie marker, PVC foam 16 x 16 inches

Two George III Silver Mustard Pots, 2015

Heidi van Wieren Aislesapphire, 2013

PVA, Elmer’s glue and ink 30 x 30 inches

Blue Rows, 2015

Aluminum tape, gaffer tape, Sharpie marker, PVC foam 9 x 12 inches

Elmer’s glue and ink on wood panel 30 x 30 inches

A Queen Anne Irish Silver Ewer, 2015

Preppy Ray, 2013

Aluminum tape, gaffer tape, Sharpie marker, PVC foam 12 x 16 inches All works courtesy of the artist and Pentimenti Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

Sandra Ono Untitled, 2011

Paper towels and glue 11 ½ x 11 ½ x 11 ½ inches Brent Hasty and Stephen Mills Collection Courtesy of Conduit Gallery, Dallas, TX

Untitled, 2013 – 2014

Mop heads and glue 37 ½ x 49 x 9 inches Courtesy of the artist

Johan Rijpma Tape Generations, 2011 2 minutes 39 seconds, 4:3 Courtesy of the artist

PVA, Elmer’s glue and ink 30 x 60 inches All works courtesy of the artist and Margaret Thatcher Projects, New York, NY


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We are pleased to present Adhere, featuring ten international artists who use stickers, tape, and glue to create works that are surprising, beautiful, and, in some cases, humorous. Though all use some form of adhesive in the creation of their works, the artists approach their materials in very different ways—some directly use the adhesives to create lines or forms, some use the properties of the adhesive to capture colors and images from secondary sources, while others use the adhesive as the subject, allowing its nature to take center stage. Regardless of the approach, all of the works on view allow us to see how ubiquitous, quotidian materials can be masterfully transformed. Our appreciation extends to all who have contributed to the exhibition, catalogue, and related programming. We were greatly honored by the enthusiasm and dedication of the artists, many who made site-specific works for this exhibition. We also thank the galleries and collectors who worked with us to make this exhibition possible. Both the exhibition and catalogue are thanks to the curatorial efforts of Assistant Curator Katherine Murdock, who has worked tirelessly organizing this exhibition. And we thank Design & Publications Manager Kristin Maizenaski for her work designing the publication. The exhibition and catalogue are made possible in part with funding from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts; the Wilf Family Foundation; the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation; The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey; the WJS Foundation; and Art Center members and donors. As always, I personally want to thank the staff of the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, all of whom work dauntlessly behind the scenes to make the development, marketing, design, and public outreach, which are necessary for success, possible. And I thank the Board of Directors, whose ongoing guidance and support of the Art Center is invaluable. Melanie Cohn Executive Director

Opposite: Tirtzah Bassel, Elevator, 2015


68 Elm Street, Summit, NJ 07901 908.273.9121 www.artcenternj.org

Gallery Hours

Monday – Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm Friday: 10 am – 5 pm Saturday & Sunday: 11 am – 4 pm

Photography by Etienne Frossard Exhibition installation Adhere and Elevator by Tirtzah Bassel The Dreary Commuter by Kayt Hester Green Forest by Hong Seon Jang Turn On, Tune Out by Vandana Jain Design by Kristin Maizenaski Printed by Brilliant Graphics © 2015, Visual Arts Center of New Jersey ISBN: 978-0-925915-49-8 Major support for the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is provided in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Wilf Family Foundations; the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation; The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey; the WJS Foundation; and Art Center members and donors.



Adhere