Cut, Copy, Paste. It's Not What You Think.
Alex Ebstein & Leah Guadagnoli
January 6, 2018 - February 17, 2018
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 6th 7-10PM
Alex Ebstein works with PVC yoga mats as her primary medium to create paintings and installation work. She is attracted to this material for its ability to act as a synthetic proxy for the body, its recognizability and providing a predetermined, readymade color palette. Personal narrative and social critique serve as the underlying motivations for her otherwise bold, abstract compositions. While they can be appreciated on a purely aesthetic level, they also convey a sardonic sense of humor.
Ebstein’s mixed media pieces are inlaid compositions in which the yoga mat is both substrate and pigment. Gestures abbreviated and streamlined from a hybrid of bodily and written communication are suspended in the tactile surface. The works are presented within the norms of painting, framed and wall-bound. The utility and familiarity of the mats is subverted, the material speaks instead to paint, collage, or fiber work.
Leah Guadagnoli makes three-dimensional wall-based constructions that balance geometry, nostalgia, and architecture into unfamiliar forms. Decades worth of history are distilled into each piece she makes. Pleasingly aligned positions are offset by patterns that she collects or reproduces— recalling interiors from the 80’s, 90’s, and Art Deco period. Visual components of the past, present, and future are combined and act as reminders of what we were, who we are, and who we might become.
Guadagnoli’s work breaks from the typical picture frame through its irregularity, plushness, and depth. It is unique in its close relationship to the methods of furniture-making and encourages interaction. From the carving and wrapping of the polyurethane foam, to the painting of carefully treated surfaces, to the sawing of the back supports made of aluminum panel, Guadagnoli is involved and in control of every step of the process. With the exception of a handful of works that include found fabric, she mostly designs and digitally prints patterns onto the fabric that is used in her works.
About the Artists
Alex Ebstein (b. 1985 New Haven, CT) is a Baltimore based artist and curator. She received her MFA from Towson University in 2015, and her BA in studio art from Goucher College. Recent solo exhibitions include Victori + Mo in Brooklyn, NY, Cuevas Tilleard in Brooklyn, NY, Frutta in Rome, Italy and Goucher College’s Rosenberg Gallery in Baltimore, MD. Her work has been included in group shows at Mixed Greens in New York, NY, Loyal Gallery in Malmo, Sweden, L0rd Ludd in Philadelphia, PA, CES gallery in Los Angeles, CA and Greenpoint Terminal Gallery in Brooklyn, NY. Her work has been reviewed in the New York Times, Baltimore City Paper, BmoreArt, and featured in Inertia Studio Visits, Work in Progress Magazine and on WAMU’s Metro Connection. Alex is the co-director of Resort, an artist-run gallery in Baltimore, MD.
Leah Guadagnoli lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received her MFA in Visual Art from Rutgers University in 2014 and her BFA in Painting and Art History from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2014. She has had solo exhibitions at 247365 (New York, NY) and Sadie Hallie Projects (Minneapolis, MN) and has been included in group exhibitions at White Columns (New York, NY), Harper’s Books (East Hampton, NY), Asya Geisberg (New York NY), Cuevas Tillard (New York, NY), Hero Beach Club (Montauk, NY), and Library Street Collective (Los Angeles, CA), among others. Guadagnoli has received support from The Lighthouse Works, Yaddo, Vermont Studio Center, The Wassaic Artist Residency, and The Ora Lerman Charitable Trust. Her work has been reviewed in New American Paintings, Art F City, Maake Magazine, The Brvtalist, Little Star Weekly, and by Maria Brito. She is the founder of the Maple Terrace Artist Residency Program
Gallery hours: Saturdays 1-5pm (except for opening day)
Featured images (left to right):
Either With or Without You
Hand-Cut PVC Yoga Mats, Twine, Acrylic and Enamel on Wood Panel
Number One Song In Heaven
Acrylic, Pumice stone, Molding paste, Plexiglas, PVC, Digital print on fabric, Canvas, Insulation board, and Polyurethane foam on Aluminum panel
60 x 38 x 3”