As part of an ongoing series, Culturehall presents a collection of work from our newest members each quarter through New Artists Features. Selected from our seasonal open call for applications, four artists are highlighted with each issue. The process is open to artist working in any discipline from anywhere in the world. As fall begins, I am honored to present a collection of work by artists who explore the materials, machines, organisms and moments that form our surroundings. Please join me in welcoming Culturehall's newest members: Amy Chan, Christopher Rodriguez, Susana Reisman and Juan Fontanive.
In her most recent body of work, Amy Chan releases her paintings from their rectangular confines. The irregular shape of Pinpoint 2 and its siblings find a physicality informed by the anonymous characters appearing in her previous paintings. With each element now residing uncontained on the wall, a Mobius-like confusion is created between observing the depiction of what could be microscopic, from sharing the perspective of also possibly existing in the same protozoan space. As with other works in the series, the image reveals itself through layers that move between thin focal planes. But Pinpoint 2 also marks a formal shift. The compounds of the cell have become less organic substance, but a crystalline doppelganger.
With his series Between Artifice and The Sublime, Christopher Rodriguez gathers moments curated from various road trips across the United States and Costa Rica. Together the images avoid the specificity of a direct narrative. Instead the landscapes, portraits, interiors and moments lean together as a collection. His photograph Pink Room and Video Loop, CR brings us to a vibrant space that aggressively offers an abundance of color. What seeming should be manipulated through physical or digital means is actually just the moment itself, captured on film. The intensely painted room seeks an unusual relationship with the outside world. From the coarse filter of garden latticework just beyond the camera's reach, the room is filled with an unexpected geometry.
Susana Reisman's Path Dependence presents a form that engages us through a masterful sense of simplicity. The immediate materiality of the sculpture is sensitizing to the elemental nature of its construction. Utilizing commercially available materials, Reisman guides a sheet of walnut veneer on a winding path through a stack of magnolia turning blanks. Path Dependence is part of her series Standardizing Nature, Trees, Wood, Lumber, an ongoing examination of commodifying natural resources. Earlier pieces from this body of work have taken form as documentary images of the timber industry. As the series has progressed, the focus shifted to the physicality of the material, with many of the works either being image-based documentation of modified wood products in the artist's studio or the objects themselves directly presented for display.
The four mechanized kineographs that comprise Juan Fontanive's Vivarium each softly beat as new images are rapidly exposed. Visual and audio rhythms oscillate between each of the stations as the sequenced screen prints of butterflies come alive. Surrounded by a digital context of design and fabrication, the mechanical sculptures find inspiration from the traditions of Victorian clock making and illustration. Beyond the motor — each work, including the bolts, has been painstakingly created by hand. The traditional origin of each artwork is somehow recognizable through its precise execution. Possibly the contemporary environment of contestant engagement with machines, especially machines that are exactingly produced by machines, makes in part what is mechanical feel exceedingly human.
David Andrew Frey is a New York-based artist, curator, and technologist. He founded Culturehall to connect artists with curators and their peers. Recently David launched ArtMgt, a platform for providing artists with opportunities to create income through the enjoyment of their work. David earned an MFA in Studio Art from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has also studied at the Camberwell College of Art in London, the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, The University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, and the Savannah College of Art and Design. He has curated exhibitions in New York of work by Culturehall artists for Ligne Roset, Cindy Rucker Gallery and the Big Screen Plaza.