Friday, March 9, 2012

outside and inside....

The biggest exhibition of Fiber Philadelphia was by far the installations of a few different shows at the Crane Arts Building. The building was way freaking far out and in a less then stellar hood but it was a gorgeous huge space perfect for an exhibition of such scale.

It took me a solid 45 minutes to an hour to get through the other shows to the Outside/Inside the Box exhibit ,which included my work, as there was so much else to see and so many people to cross paths with. But I finally made it back to the large open space. I will admit I hate seeing work at openings because you miss half of it and I did. Looking at the slide show on fiber philly's site I am like "hey I did not see that!" but I still did see many pieces and got a good sense of the overall exhibit.

I realized that the title of Outside/Inside the Box was actually quite literal which I kind of appreciated. It was evident that the curatorial point of view was intentionally selecting work that was more in the domain of traditional fiber art made by more traditional but modern fiber artists and combining this with work that was very fresh, contemporary, and "outside" of the box . It was interesting to see these works of SO much diversity all in one show. There of course lacked the conversation that you often like to see in an exhibit because of that. But they did pull off a few moments where the work had a really nice relationship with each other. In fact I loved that my work was installed next to a piece of Magali Rizzo's. Her's of a male figure and mine of a female- it created a nice moment of narrative in a abstract heavy show.

A highlight for me was seeing the work of Heidi Field-Alvarez and also getting to chat with her quite a bit. Our paths crossed a few times over the weekend and I was so happy to get to know her. I exhibited one of her video works in Cutting Edge but the piece at Out/In was a really nice work and installation I liked seeing the making via the video, the process via the materials, and the result of the process all at once.

I also was drawn to the hand woven space of Rachel Mica Weiss. I am always intrigued by little spaces created within galleries and this one had a wonderful tension of being inviting and frightening at once. I loved how at first look it seems quite traditional but because it was hung all the way to the ceiling and had very visible ropes attached to industrial materials it placed it in a very contemporary context.

I also loved the piece by Reineke Hollander, which would be no surprise since it is of everyday household objects, has a lovely sense of color, and collaged old linens and doilies into it. But in general it felt like something different in a room with very similar textures.

I also like the jackets pieces made by
Jackson Martin. Always nice to see a male artist making personal work. He is an artist I definitely would like to do a little research on.

I really wish I had been able to get back to the show after the opening to get to concentrate on the work but these are what stuck out to me in a room FULL of people and art. I felt like in general the installation was good, though my work had some major installation issues that I had to fix and I heard some other complaints. But I know how hard it is to work with so many pieces and so many artist--- rarely is fiber "just hanging" it on the wall so I empathized. I would say my biggest problem with the installation is how they kind of "stuck" small works on the ends of the movable walls. These works all suffered from a lack of light and just an awkward place of being. But again I empathized there is so much good work you end up accepting more then you really have space for and then you have to figure out how to hang it all.

The highlight of the show was getting to meet and chat with so many of the artists, though I wish I could have met even more of them. It was nice to see such a large scale show thoughtfully put together and I was delighted to have received an the Honorable Mention, though actually winning some of that money would have made my husband very happy. But a huge honor none the less.

I highly recommend going to the show if you can and if you cannot you can see all of the works via their online slide show which I took a lot of images for this post from since I neglected to take many pictures that night.

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