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2900 Detroit Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44113
Curated by: Andrea Gyorody
Featuring SPACES Season Pass Member Artists: Hangama Amiri, Sequoia Bostick, Logan Bruni, Shelly Duncan, Liane Engstrom, Lindsay Gryskewich, Timothy Herron, Antwoine Washington, McKinley Wiley
This is not an exhibition. That might seem like a cheeky reference to René Magritte’s Ceci n’est pas un pipe (This is not a pipe), but I promise I’m not making a (nerdy) semiotic joke. This online feature offers anyone with internet access a taste of recent work by a number of SPACES member artists, but it can’t—and isn’t trying to—do justice to these works in the manner of a white-walled exhibition. I haven’t had the pleasure, or challenge, of arranging these works in space, taking into account all of their IRL complexities in order to create a sense of rhythm and conversation. With few exceptions, these artworks aren’t even born-digital: they are objects with volume (even if it’s just the thickness of a sheet of paper), texture, color with greater nuance than a digital camera can capture, dimensions that register in contrast or congruence with the human body, levels of detail that feel different when one must move physically closer to see them, a smell that lingers long after paint dries.
But for all that’s lost by not being able to be in a room with the works gathered here, they are nevertheless compelling, testament to the power of art to grab you even when it’s been blunted by the limitations imposed by a global pandemic. The time warp of loneliness that has defined the past few months for so many suffuses Logan Bruni’s video, in which a faceless figure endlessly traverses a barren virtual landscape not unlike the craggy, dystopian topographies in paintings by Liane Engstrom. Solitude also tinges Shelly Duncan’s sun-soaked self-portraits, while in McKinley Wiley’s work, aloneness frames the quiet strength and self-possession of his subjects, a theme also explored in Sequoia Bostick’s digital drawings of young women getting selfie-ready.
Lindsay Gryskewich’s stand-out paintings of empty spaces that meld one into the other have a psychological intensity that updates Surrealist and Expressionist tropes for the present day—with a joyously bright palette and bits of 3D collage, no less. That invocation of art-historical precedent is part of the charm and good humor of Timothy Herron’s paintings, which feature a beer-drinking nun, an alien invasion, and Godzilla attacking King Kong against a Van Gogh sky.
Hangama Amiri’s mixed media textiles bring us back down to earth, where she recalls everyday scenes in Kabul, Afghanistan, in deftly sewn quilts that formally embrace the fragmentation of childhood memory, and explore—with surprising eroticism—the persecution and perseverance of Afghan women. The body, in its inescapable realities, is also the subject of Antwoine Washington’s work. Black skin, rendered with great subtlety and care, dominates his drawings and paintings of proud, defiant young men, their bodies marked by violence. (Slauson Boy memorializes LA rapper and community leader Nipsey Hussle, who was murdered in 2019.)
The body, in its inescapable realities, has been the source and site of fear and anxiety these past months, threatened both by a novel virus and by the well-studied, persistent sickness of anti-Black racism rooted in the foundations of this nation. We don’t know when either might fully abate, if ever, but it is crystal clear that we won’t see progress unless we prioritize care for one another, and especially for the most vulnerable and precarious among us. For right now, that means experiencing art largely from the (dis)comfort of home. So enjoy this non-exhibition of truly exemplary work, support artists in whatever way you can, wear your mask, wash your hands, donate and protest and VOTE and don’t stop caring until we can be together—surrounded by art—again.
@hangamaamiri on Instagram
@Hangama Amiri on Facebook
@hangama_art on Twitter
@sequoiabostickillustration on Instagram
How To Take A Perfect Selfie, series (2020)
@loganbruni on Instagram
@leesodyssey on Instagram
@LianesMind on Facebook
@LianeEngstrom on Twitter
@lindsaygryskewich on Instagram
@lindsay.martin.5268 on Facebook
@thedarkroomco on Twitter
Hangama Amiri is an Afghan-Canadian artist who works in painting and video. Much of Hangama’s work is figurative and focuses on cross-cultural dialogue and women's rights. Many of her paintings address the treatment of women in Afghanistan, in particular the infringements on their human rights. Hangama has been a Canadian... go to artist page
Sequoia Bostick is an illustrator, comic creator and designer living in Cleveland. After earning her BFA in Illustration from the Cleveland Institute of Art, Sequoia pursued a career as a resident teaching artist working with local youth. In addition to teaching and her own studio practice, she also works on... go to artist page
Logan Drake Bruni recently received his BFA from Kent State University in Sculpture and Expanded Media. Logan explores his relationship to the online world with ironic media works that are underscored by a sense of isolation and alienation. He is preparing for an upcoming exhibition at CICA Museum in Gimpo,... go to artist page
Shelly Duncan is a fine art photographer currently based in Cleveland. In addition to her studio practice, Shelly also co-hosts photography meetups and curates themed gallery exhibitions. An important aspect of Shelly’s work is her focus on community engagement with local artists. She believes that community is a key ingredient... go to artist page
Liane Engstrom is a painter, writer and mural artist from Cleveland. Her landscape works provoke contemplation on time, existence and the nature of reality. Liane recently received her BFA degree in painting from the Cleveland Institute of Art. Her work has been presented in Cleveland at Bostwick Design and Waterloo... go to artist page
Lindsay Gryskewich’s paintings document how we move between chaotic architecture and natural vegetation. The locations that she depicts - the home street, the wooded path, the clearing before the valley—all resonate as important places to the map of our lives. Lindsay received her MFA from Oregon College of Art and... go to artist page
Timothy Herron is a Cleveland artist who studied at Cooper School of Art and the Cleveland Institute of Art. Timothy’s narrative image making practice combines working from direct observation and also through collaborations with other artists. For the past 14 he has managed The Pretentious Cleveland Portrait Artists who meet... go to artist page
Antwoine Washington is a Cleveland artist whose work is inspired by the black experience in America. Through a combination of painting and drawing, Antwoine creates emotionally charged portraits of the daily lives of Black Americans. He was recently awarded a Cleveland Arts Prize “Verge Fellowship” that identifies talented artists on... go to artist page
McKinley Wiley is a photographer based in Cleveland. McKinley has over 15 years of editorial portrait experience that exemplifies his passion for life and fine art. He is a graduate of Baldwin-Wallace University, who inadvertently found his calling while mentoring high school students at an enrichment program in 2004.... go to artist page
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