ELEANNA ANAGNOS MOTHER TONGUE
ELEANNA ANAGNOS Mother Tongue
The Place Where Waves Lick the Sandy Edge by Clare Grill A Radiolab episode from 2014 describes how a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly. Unlike the common understanding—it eats a bunch of leaves, builds a cocoon, grows wings, and emerges capable of flight—reality is at once more miraculous and mystifying. A caterpillar actually turns to goo, melting its body into a soup of cells inside the chrysalis. We know the caterpillar contains thin versions of its future butterfly parts—wings and antennae—prior to pupation. Certain cells survive the destruction to form eyes, wings, legs, and a body. At least on a cellular level, the butterfly carries memories of life as a caterpillar. Metamorphosis is less a death and more a transformation of the body, a resurrection. Eleanna Anagnos’ work impresses you, and then morphs on you, rebirthing itself like a butterfly. Her show, Mother Tongue, is so much about impression, be it in the perceptual way that we remember things, can’t get them out of our head, or the physical one, the kind where you press a soft material into a harder, textured one and come away with evidence of the encounter: a trace, a marking, a communion of two things so powerful that one actually changes the other, physically and forever. There is a violence to this alteration. In no other work is it more evident than in Our Song (2019), one of the smallest pieces in the show. The work hangs low on the wall, forcing the viewer into an uncomfortably dominant position. The clay, with its backbone-like texture pinched out of a vertical center, is bent over, finger holes poking down into it, forced into submission by its maker. Soft Labia Dream (2019), calls to mind wadded-up toilet paper stuck to a wall or ceiling, flung there and forgotten, dried, crusted over, and left alone. The paper pulp is dyed pink, not the sweet pink of cotton candy but the faint, brownish pink of blood swabbed, rinsed, and wrung out. Preserved in a frame, it’s memorialized, vaguely in the shape of hands or mittens and with the texture of thinly sliced meat or peeling skin from sunburned shoulders. These works speak of vulnerability, no doubt, but they are joined by others that call to mind strength and protection, complicating the story Anagnos tells. Lambda (2019) with its gunmetal gray and sharpened edges, evokes a shield. And Heelèe (2019), a human head-sized piece covered in protruding, upturned scales or protective barnacles, a mask. The two holes in Heelèe might read as eyes were they not placed vertically one over the other, one eye and one mouth, perhaps a mask for a Cyclops.
The shield form in Gift of Tongues (2018) similarly recalls the decorative bodywear of ancient warriors. The central panel’s squiggly, woven line straightens out at its edges, pilled yarn reaching toward flanks of flat disc-like bumps resembling alligator skin. At another glance we’re seeing the carved ripples of centuries of sediment, waves of sand and water bordered by protrusions. Then fungi growing up a mossy tree trunk, poisonous perhaps, and climbing like steps to another dimension. The work shifts yet again and it becomes a vessel, a cup for your mouth. If Gift of Tongues is a cup or a breastplate, then Creed (2019) could be its matching shield: a pelt covered in menacing spikes. Closer attention suggests not an admonition to keep out, but an invitation to engage an intimate document. The flat, disc-like protrusions which dot the surface suggest the repeated impressions of a mouth sucking, molds of the inside of this intimate and powerful part of the human body. Aphrodite’s Chariot (2017) also calls to mind the body. Two ribbed, peach-colored triangles nestle in a fluffy white material, the texture of ambrosia salad: marshmallows suspended in a matrix of whipped cream. Or is it the sea foam from which Aphrodite, goddess of love and pleasure, emerged at birth? Halved vertically by a thin white line, it resembles a chest plate, a bra, a window, a thong. It’s too slippery for a single read: protection and exposure are both at play. In Double Digger (2019), a small quiet piece in glazed stoneware, surface marks resemble a pair of crab tracks skidded along a beach at the place where waves lick the sandy edge, writing and rewriting the topography that is at once miniscule and enormous. Two pink, tongue-like forms emerge from the bottom, digging in or pushing out, gravestones marking a life and a death, another metamorphosis. Which brings me to Queen (2019), the largest and most colorful work in the show. Suspended in midair, its shape reminds you of a butterfly though the expected symmetry is altered. Wings birth new wings, but not evenly. One wing is the runt, the other massive and uplifting, complete with extra decoration: pigmented urethane circles embedded in paper pulp. Queen hangs a foot and a half from the wall, just enough room for you to move behind, your face so close to the surface that you see only material. Just as the wings do not mirror each other, so the backside does not repeat its front. While the front of Queen resembles paper pulp, the back holds the impression of Styrofoam. You can only wonder: maybe it is as light as a butterfly after all. Even as such associations arise, we are brought down to earth by the material. Anagnos offers a naked revelation of process. She spackles wing to body to wing with thick dressings of paper pulp acting as adhesive at the seams. Black sand like rich soil, pulp tinted the unmistakable green of a caterpillar, and silver foillike slug smears quietly embellish the backside while gray bars climb up the wings. The material doesn’t sit still, nor does its meaning. What rises remains in the earth, latent, undisturbed.
To the left of Queen is another vaguely butterfly-shaped work called Ramble (2019). At first glance it looks like the surface of a moon. The topography contains rhythms, nuanced and messy, touched by a human and not a god. A patina of gray smoke or dust across the surface makes the piece feel like it has been there forever, undisturbed, collecting the evidence of time. The left side is burnished with silver, the dust memorialized to a shine. Two white triangles anchor the bottom, drawing out yellows and creams. Anagnos shines a light on the warmth of these colors through her decision to root the material in cold bright white. She knows the difference and she shows us how to see it. This quiet distinction in material forces a closer look at the rest, lest we miss something. You must have your eyes wide open when looking at Anagnosâ€™ work; itâ€™s eternally on the verge of becoming.
Originally from Chicago, Clare Grill lives and works in Queens, NY. She received her MFA from the Pratt Institute in 2005, and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2011. Solo exhibitions include Zieher Smith & Horton Gallery (New York), Reserve Ames (Los Angeles, CA), Soloway Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), and Real Art Ways (Hartford, CT). Her work has been exhibited in group shows in Chicago, Seattle, St. Louis, New York, Hawaii, San Francisco, Guadalajara, London, Bologna and Denmark. Grill was a 2017 recipient of a Steep Rock Arts residency in Roxbury, CT and was the Fall 2017 Artist-in-Residence at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Her work has been reviewed in Artforum, Modern Painters, ArtNews, Hyperallergic, the Brooklyn Rail, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Boston Globe.
Double Digger , 2019, glazed stoneware, 7.5 x 6.75 x 2 inches
Creed, 2019, paper pulp, 37 x 26.5 x 3 inches
Gift of Tongues, 2019, paper pulp mix and resin, 19 x 20 x 4 inches
Our Song, 2019, glazed stoneware, 8 x 5.75 x 4.25 inches
Lambda, 2019, paper pulp mix, acrylic and resin, 20 x 10.5 x 4.25 inches
Queen, 2019, paper pulp mix, dye, sand, urethane, holographic oil, 40 x 29 x 2 inches
Ramble, 2019, paper pulp mix, acrylic and resin, 29 x 27 x 7 inches
Soft Labia Dream (Pink Symphony Series), 2019, paper pulp, paper pulp mix and dye , 9 x 11 inches
HeelĂŠe, 2019, stoneware, 13.5 x 10.5 x 4.25 inches
Aphroditeâ€™s Chariot, 2017, hydro-cal and acrylic, 17 x 16 x 6 inches
Eleanna Anagnos b. Evanston, IL
EDUCATION Temple University, Tyler School of Art, MFA Painting, Elkins Park, PA, 2005 Temple Rome, Tyler School of Art, MFA Painting Candidate, Rome, Italy, 2004 Kenyon College, BA Studio Art with Concentration in Women’s and Gender Studies, Gambier, OH, 2002 SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2019 Mother Tongue, High Noon Gallery, New York, NY Unity Gallery, Maharishi University, Fairfield, IA 2018 Berkana, Ewing Gallery of Art and Architecture, Knoxville, TN Aphrodite’s Chariot, Kent Place School, Summit, NJ SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 2019 Eleanna Anagnos & Ryan Parker, CSPS Gallery, Cedar Rapids, IA Biennial:Volume III, BRIC Arts Media, curated by Elizabeth Ferrer and Jenny Gerow, Brooklyn, NY Color Dimension, LA Art Show, Kwanhoon Gallery, curated by Rachel Vancelette, Los Angeles, CA 2017 The Painted Desert, High Noon Gallery, New York, NY dOGUMENTA, Brookfield Place, New York, NY Para-Verbal Vocab, curated by Kristen Racaniello, Spring Break Art Show, New York, NY 2016 Serious Play, Automat, Philadelphia, PA Plus One, Trestle Contemporary, Brooklyn, NY Portal, Ground Floor Gallery, Brooklyn, NY Verblist, curated by Mark Joshua Epstein, E.Tay Gallery, New York, NY A Decalogue of Tenebrous Luminaries, organized by William Norton, Pop-up at Art Helix, Brooklyn, NY Grow(th), curated by Kristen Racaniello, Ess Ef Eff, Brooklyn, NY
Newman Plus One, Proto Gallery, Hoboken, NJ Physical Painting, curated by Jennifer Samet, Maass Gallery, Purchase College, Westchester, NY 2015 Satellite Squared, curated by Zahar Vaks and Nicole Langille, Satellite Contemporary, LasVegas, NV 12x12, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, UT GAME GENIE, curated by Polly Shindler and Will Hutnick, Trestle Projects, Brooklyn, NY 2014 Person, Place or Thing: Works on Paper, curated by Quang Bao, 68 Projects, Berlin, Germany EARTHTWERKS and other celestial familiars, Sidecar Gallery, Hammond, IN LA Initiative Benefit Art Auction, organized by Stanley Hollander, Rema Hort Mann Foundation, Los Angeles, CA Do it Yourself, curated by Julie Alexander, Bushwick Open Studios 2014, Brooklyn, NY 2013 Special Guests, Sardine, Brooklyn, NY November show, curated by Jonathan Torres, The Diplomat, Brooklyn, NY Location! Location! Location!, curated by Sun You, President Clinton Projects, Brooklyn, NY Radius, curated by Marcella Hackbardt, Horwitz Hall Gallery, Gambier, OH Art Lottery, Issue Project Room Benefit, Three Legged Dog, New York, NY 2012 Peaces on Earth, curated by Jon Lutz, Sardine, Brooklyn, NY To keep us in the dark ages of color, curated by Elsa Koenig, DIE AUSSTELLUNGSSTRASSE, Vienna, Austria American Friends of the Louvre, Young Patrons Circleâ€™s Annual Benefit, Consulate General of France, New York, NY 2011 Gucci, curated by The 62nd Dimension, CENTER, Milwaukee, WI Chain-Letter, Samson Projects, Boston, MA Biennial 26, Juried by Betsy Carpenter of the Walker Art Center, South Bend Museum of Art, South Bend, IN Spotlights, Juried by Jon Lutz, Rebekah Templeton Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA BWYlove, Marianne Boesky, Rema Hort Mann Foundation, New York, NY 2009 Symbio/ Biopolis, Galerie Vaclava Spaly, Prague, Czech Republic Neolaia Pathos, National Hellenic Museum, Chicago, IL Annual BAMart Silent Auction, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn, NY Accrochage, Kouros Gallery, New York, NY
2008 Accrochage, Kouros Gallery, New York, NY 2007 Accrochage, Kouros Gallery, New York, NY Beyond, Sam Quinn Gallery, Philadelphia, PA 2006 Fluxus, Avery Art Center, Statesboro, GA 2005 Art on the Walk, Tower Investments, Philadelphia, PA 2004 MFA Candidates, Temple Rome Gallery, Rome, Italy AWARDS, GRANTS, RESIDENCIES Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Residency, Captiva, FL, 2019 Grant Wood Painting Fellow, Iowa City, IA, 2018 Yaddo Fellow, Saratoga Springs, NY, 2017 BAU at Camargo Fellow, Cassis, France, 2016 Economic Relief Grant, The Mayer Foundation, 2014 Emergency Grant, Artists’ Fellowship Inc., 2014 The Old American Can Factory, Brooklyn, NY, 2013 Anderson Ranch Residency, Snowmass Village, CO, 2011 Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant, (to attend Anderson Ranch Residency), 2011 Atlantic Center for the Arts Residency, New Smyrna, FL, 2009 Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant, (to attend Atlantic Center for the Arts Residency), 2009 Chashama Studio Program, New York, NY, 2008- 2010 Margaret E. Leslie Prize in Art, Kenyon College, Gambier, OH, 2005 The Molly Hatcher Prize in Women’s and Gender Studies, Kenyon College, Gambier, OH, 2005 Purchase Prize, Kenyon College, Gambier, OH, 2005 SELECTED COLLECTIONS Kenyon College, Gambier, OH Lake Forest High School, Lake Forest, IL The Silent Wolf, LLC, Lake Forest, IL Toasted Head Wines, San Francisco, CA
BIBLIOGRAPHY Steinhauer, Jillian, “What to See in New York Art Galleries This Week, The New York Times,” January 2019 Sutton, Benjamin, “The Pleasures and Pitfalls of Starting and Sustaining an Artist-Run Gallery,” Artsy, August 2018 Barone, Joshua, “Treats, Jewelry, and Astro Turf: Scenes From an Art Show for Dogs”, The New York Times, August 2017 Cascone, Sarah, “Art Unleashed! Take a Tour of ‘dOGUMENTA,’ America’s First Art Exhibition That’s Just for Dogs”, Artnet, August 2017 Schmitt-Tegge, Johannes, “Kunstkenner auf Pfoten, ‘Dogumenta’ in New York”, Sudkurier, August 2017 Ziv, Stav, “The Latest Art Trend is Catering to Dogs, Because Canines Deserve Entertainment, Too”, Newsweek, June 2017 Martinez, Alanna. “This Art Show Is Only for Dogs and the End Is Nigh”, Observer.com, May 2017 Fishman, Madison, “In Conversation with Eleanna Anagnos”, ATMOS, June 2017 Schwendener, Martha, 10 Galleries to Visit Now in Brooklyn, The New York Times, April 2017 McCafferty, Kelly, “White Chalky Powder”, The Coastal Post, March 2017 Kreimer, Julian, “Wish Me Good Luck”, Art in America, February 2017 Sutton, Benjamin, “Your Concise Guide to Gowanus Open Studios 2016, Hyperallergic, October 2016 Torrey, Emily, “The New York Artist-Run Galleries You Need to Know - Part I”, Artsy, November 2015 Sutton, Benjamin, “From Giant Steel Angels to Titillating Collages, Favorites from Gowanus Open Studios 2015”, Hyperallergic, October 20, 2015 Mahoney, Alice, “Three Must See Shows This Week” Art List, 2015 Weekend Edition, “11Things to do in New York’s art world before June 16th” New York Observer, 2015 Bailly, Jenny and Cruz, Clarissa. “Top Down, Change Up”, O Magazine, July 2013 Hybenova, Katerina. “10 Things To Do This Weekend: The Ultimate Jingle Edition” Bushwickdaily.com, 2012 nymuseums.com, Eva Ostrowska, Curator’s Cho “Why not perform with a run of 33 miles?”, November 2011 Philly.com, Edith Newhall. Lutz Looks, May 29, 2011 McMenamin, Alison. “Emerging Talent in the Spotlight at Rebecca Templeton” In Liquid art + design blog. 3 June 2011 Rosof, Libby. “Templeton Spotlights 9 emerging artists. Web log post. Theartblog. 2 May 2011 “Day Trip”, Wieden + Kennedy (in house publication for global corporate clients), 2009 Bryan, Meredith. “Eight-Day Week” The New York Observer, January 6, 2009 “Structured Chaos,” New York Arts Magazine, July/August 2008 Brodsky, Daniella, “Intuitive Process” LUXE: The Chicago Home Redefined, February 2008 Groover, Bobbi. “F&B Portrait: Brush Strokes” Forest & Bluff, June 2005
Eleanna Anagnos | Mother Tongue April 18 - May 26, 2019 Edition of 100
Publisher: © 2019 Jared Linge HIGH NOON GALLERY
Art © 2017 - 2019 Eleanna Anagnos Text © 2019 Clare Grill Photography Adam Reich
All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reprinted or reproduced in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, without prior permission from the publisher.
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cover (detail): Creed, 2019, paper
pulp, 37 x 26.5 x 3 inches
Exhibition catalog for Eleanna Anagnos - "Mother Tongue," the artist's solo debut with the gallery, including an essay by NYC based artist C...
Published on May 14, 2019
Exhibition catalog for Eleanna Anagnos - "Mother Tongue," the artist's solo debut with the gallery, including an essay by NYC based artist C...