JULY–AUGUST 2007Mixed Greens is thrilled to present a group show exploring diverse ideas of travel. For some of the artists in this exhibition, a trip is defined as a physical distance between points, while for others it is a metaphorical space to be traversed or overcome.
Luke Barber-Smith photographs phantasmagoric locales. Exaggerated light sources cause buildings to appear as landscapes or mirages, set against multi-colored backdrops. The spirit of exploration holds endless possibility in these psychotropic horizons.
Jinkee Choi’s project, Autistic Optimism, transforms mass-produced items into poignant, poetic sculptures. Often humorous, the small sculptures prove that the most banal objects can stimulate the imagination. In this show, he gives a traveler’s consumer waste new beginnings.
Linda Ganjian uses miniature polymer clay forms to create symbolic landscapes inspired by Middle Eastern carpets. Her labor-intensive settlements mimic actual architecture from her own travels, as well as imaginary, otherworldly destinations. Whether the inspiration comes from smoke stacks in Long Island City or a castle in Transylvania, Ganjian magically transforms the reference into a kaleidoscopic fantasyland.
Birgitta Lund's photographic series, In Transit, is a personal and political reflection based on her return to Denmark after 18 years in the United States. Photographs featuring stark juxtapositions between the two countries are a contemporary visual journey, at once globally understood and entirely personal.
Eric Payson is a photographer, performance artist, filmmaker, storyteller and lover of the open road. In his latest monograph, You can’t spell America without Eric, documents his extensive travels throughout the United States with perceptive acuity. Each captured moment, whether through a windshield, in an airport, or on the street, is an uncanny representation of all things American.
Don Porcella creates otherworldly paintings with his unique approach to the ancient medium of encaustic. For this exhibition, Porcella has created a large-scale painting of a road trip, complete with alien encounter. In addition, Porcella also created a 5-foot tall alien and smaller alien dolls whose playful quality undermines fears of a serious alien invasion.
Kathryn Refi’s work investigates how best to define herself amidst the chaos of everyday life. In Driving Routes documents the path she drove every day for one month, and then records the results in beautiful, raised line drawings. Through carefully set parameters, she casts a wide enough net to capture subtle and intricate patterns and differences.
Marie Sauvaitre is interested in globalization, the culture of mobility, and the definition of borders. In her photographic project, Errances (the French word for something between exiles and wanderings), Sauvaitre explores nomadic spaces as diverse as Bedouin camps, Beat Generation communes, and gypsy trailers across cultures and continents.
Joseph Smolinski’s graphite drawings feature the increasingly ubiquitous cell phone tower-trees growing up in the American landscape. Often themselves a roadside curiosity, more than one of these morphed, bionic trees are involved in roadway calamities.
Zoë Sonenberg is fascinated by unrealistic and nostalgic depictions of the landscape. After traveling to a location, Sonenberg compares her experience to the glossy brochures from the tourism office. Using hand-dyed papers, she then creates colorful collaged paintings based on an idealized version of her travels, imbuing them with self-conscious optimism.
Amy Stein spent months driving across America searching out and photographing stranded motorists for her series Stranded. Stein's experience of cross-country travel and her documentation of its roadside perils is a deeply personal meditation on the tension and desolation found on the shoulders of America's interstates.
Ann Tarantino makes performative, process-based work, drawn from sources including architectural plans, musical scores, knitting patterns and landscape paintings from the East and West. The abstract, colorful works on paper are maps of travel both literal and figurative, investigating and reimagining the world’s vast, growing networks of information.
Carlo Vialu’s Untitled is an interactive tent made of multiple photographs of a tree printed on rice paper. By inviting viewers to lie down on a sleeping bag and be surrounded by backlit prints of branches, leaves and sky, Vialu’s photo-sculpture asks participants to explore their own preconceptions as they re-imagine their environment.
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