Our Material Selections: Live Subject Matter and Objects of Absurdity Appear In This Week’s Newest Art Shows

Christian Berman’s material selections appear in “Chapultec Samsara”, opening Friday at OUTLET (image courtesy of OUTLET)

We acquire our materials quite obviously in the same way we do our friends: by choice. But I believe our materials also share a characteristic of family: we’re born with them. Intrinsically or innately, we’re meant for the arts and crafts that we take up. Black and white paper, papier-mâché, polaroids, plywood, pedestals, plastic bags and pornographic stills all make their way into these artists’ works this week, and their meanings and stories go beyond choice selection. Live plants, shrines, self-portraits and experience in absurdity further reflect their visual craft. From here, you could say it’s a friends and family affair: take your pick on what to see this week in Bushwick.

#1 “Chapultepec Samsara” and “29 Palms” @ OUTLET (FRI 7-10 PM)

253 Wilson Avenue

Chapultepec Samsara + 29 Palms open Friday, November 6th (images courtesy of OUTLET)

We’ve seen Christian Berman’s works over the years and had a studio visit to learn more on his unique material selections, and examine the works of mother of pearl, macaw feathers and antiques from his grandmother’s home in Mexico. Now for his solo show at OUTLET, Berman brings us splices of artistic cultural influence from Japanese Ukiyo-e prints to Aztec myths, with an interplay between fact, memory and fiction, reflecting upon his own history of displacement and relocation.

Alongside Berman’s “Chapultepec Samsara” Eric Santoscoy-McKillip explores his roots to the American Southwest with “29 Palms.” Cyphers of color and texture play upon intentionally ambiguous sculptures and paintings where the resulting topographies act as metaphors for the layers of experience composing our identities.


#2 “Woo-Woo-Womanival” and “Portrait of Some Sort of Self” @ Wayfarers (THURS 7-10 PM)

1109 Dekalb Avenue

Wayfarers_Woo Woo WOMANIMAL

Exploring the yin-yang of life and death, happy and sad, Caroline Paquita’s “Woo-Woo-Womanival” will appear as a carnival-meets-healing-center installation inside of Wayfarers this Thursday night. Objects of absurdity, papier-mâché, kinetic wood sculpture, plus a hint of Coney Island inspiration make up Paquita’s womanimals.

On the TOBY Project Wall, Eddie Chu’s “Portrait of Some Sort of Self” addresses the color-saturated images that we project through social media. Through the use of platform filters and online apps, its as if we’re creating portraits of ourselves that don’t truly exist IRL in the literal sense.


#3 “The First Time Is Not Like Porn” @ Christopher Stout Gallery (FRI 6-9 PM)

299 Meserole Street

Linda Griggs in her studio (image courtesy of Christopher Stout Gallery)

Christopher Stout Gallery (CSG/NY) opened in October with the debut show “Shepard” by Phoenix Lindsey-Hall. The opening and the overall excitement of the new space was one for the ages, and now CSG/NY is onto its second exhibition with “The First Time Is Not Like Porn” featuring paintings and drawings by Linda Griggs. We listened to Linda speak on her subject matter during the February 2014 Bushwick Art Crit session, describing interviews with her friends and with strangers on their experiences with porn and losing their virginity. Now she’s carefully painted out their narratives and layered them with pornographic stills to show us her take on biological human sexuality and the artificial side of it. In the project room “Skin In The Game ” will take place showing the gallery’s 9 other represented artists, allowing an alternative perspective to approach Linda’s solo exhibition.


#4 Volume 2 “Black & White” @ Schema Projects (FRI 6-9 PM)

92 St. Nicholas Avenue

Volume 2 “Black & White” (image courtesy of Schema Projects)

When looking through the art history telescope, we’re reminded that paper has a long and noble history as an artistic materials means. Derived from the word papyrus, the craft of paper-making began in China circa AD 100 and spread through use by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, remaining as a small-scale artisan activity until its industrialization during the 19th century. Expanding on its rich history, the artists of Volume 2 “Black & White” further respond by transforming it from the 2-D into the 3-D, making a bold challenge to the conventional hierarchy of painting and other media; showcasing humble attention to an often times discarded material. Co-curated by Mary Judge and Enrico Gomez, Volume 2 features over 15 artists and opens this Friday night at Schema Projects.


#5 “Feelings on Standing” @ 99¢ Plus Gallery (FRI 7-10 PM)

238 Wilson Avenue

Kylie White’s “Feelings on Standing” (image courtesy of 99¢ Plus Gallery)

Per the natural inclination and physical manifestation of the human posture to construct things upward, “Feelings on Standing” consists of a group of pedestal-like sculptures speaking to the act of building in itself. Designed on a scale which was the absolute maximum that could be managed by one individual, artist Kylie White reveals the outcome of a single human effort in an acclamation of the impulse to build.


#6 “The Hand Inventory Project” @ Amos Eno Gallery (FRI 6-9 PM)

1087 Flushing Avenue, Suite 120

From “Hand Inventory Project” (image courtesy of Amos Eno Gallery)

Throughout the month of November Amos Eno Gallery is hosting the interactive exhibition for “The Hand Inventory Project,” where visitors can have their hands photographed and write about it on the gallery walls. The interactive installation will be followed by a month of poetry and storytelling events and workshops inside the gallery.


#7 Brian Sharrock & Kyle Ford @ Los Ojos (FRI 6-9 PM)

12 Cypress Avenue

Brian Sharrock & Kyle Ford (image courtesy of Los Ojos)

Plywood sculptural hybrids and yellow cotton fabric are the material selections of Brian Sharrock and Kyle Ford for the latest show opening at Los Ojos. Loosely-based on Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein, Sharrock’s works raise the spectral enigma of the fictional monster, the wooden webs acting as stand-ins and serving as his footprints. In Ford’s works a variety of human and animal representations reference subjects in art and literature. Through saturated and pigmented along the fabric’s surface, their content and intent are left open-ended.


#8 “Drifters, Neveruses” @ Songs for Presidents (SAT 7-10 PM)

1673 Gates Avenue

Josh Blackwell, “Neveruses (Dropoff)”(image courtesy of Songs for Presidents)

Drifters, Neveruses” takes on the concept of ‘painting as difficult object’ via Josh Blackwell and Lizzie Scott’s combinations of paintings and things. Material objects like plastic bags, fabric, yarn, paper and stuffing undermine the traditional authorial control in their paintings, all of which are further enhanced through exhibition and performance. Songs for Presidents will also host an afternoon of experimental performances in conjunction with “Drifters, Neveruses” on November 21, from 2-6pm.


What To See During Weekend Gallery Hours:

“Staves, Gussets, Laths, Tenons” @ The Hollows (SAT-SUN 1-6 PM)

708 Bushwick Avenue

Ivan Stojakovic’s live plant piece from the “Urban Wild” series on view inside The Hollows

Staves, Gussets, Laths, Tenons” opened on November 4th, with works by over 20 artists who integrate the support of their media into their visual craft. Among these 20+ artists, live materials from Ivan Stojakovic’s Urban Wild series engage with distinctions between the natural and fabricated world, merging aspects of painting, sculpture and gardens. Dallas Athent’s outdoor shrine creates a sacred place for the self between the front door to The Hollows art space and the infinite structural and visual elements of Bushwick Avenue.


“Lat and Long” @ Fresh Window (FRI-SUN 1-6 PM)

56 Bogart Street, lower level

“Lat and Long” is on view at Fresh Window through December 6th

Fresh Window’sLat and Long” opened on October 23rd with works examining the eternal mutability of objects, spaces, “blind spots” and their functions. Artist Karyn Olivier shares an uninhibited experience in absurdity, poetics, fluidity, mortality, nostalgia and melancholy, uniting these dichotomies to give us a greater awareness of our identities and surroundings.

Latest articles

Related articles