Era VI VII VI: Début

The show Début, currently on display at the trimonthly artist-run gallery space Era VI VII VI, is the first exhibition in the project space featuring all four in-studio artists and founders. In this eclectic show each individual artist’s voice is strong and highly independent. The aesthetic vocabulary in the four artist’s bodies of work reveals conflicting ideals between each of the four founders, yet results in a harmonious oeuver displayed in the space. This lack of cohesion between ideals does not detract from each piece, but highlights the words of Leyla Mozayen in the press release which read that:

“antithetical methods of art making are explored… Era VI VII VI and its featured gallery-artists have much bigger ideas about how to have it all.”

This show does, indeed, have it all.

Début is staged in a perfect first floor space with windows to the street right on the corner of Gates and Woodward Ave in Ridgewood. The monolith given center stage in the gallery is the creation of Hilliary K. Gabryel and is entitled The Eleventh Dynasty. It reminds viewers of the past and present roles of women in society and the arts, composed of voluptuous, rolling furs, delicate pearl pin-heads, crushed velvet, and coconut oil, to name a few of the materials in this distinctly feminine, neo-baroque contraption of brooding space.

The six works of Daniella Gomez Paz on display in Début exhibit a much subtler femininity, yet speak volumes to the power of the word and the sway that it has held over women and minorities. These works are all vaguely anthropomorphic (with exception to My Words Are Worthless Voicing To You, a wall sculpture which is essentially a cascading waterfall of fabric letters which burst from fleshy pink silk) and word based. Nestled in the very corner, closest to the windows of the gallery is a nest like wall piece aptly named Tying Together Your Lies. This work by Gomez Paz is a beautiful example of femininity evoked through hand cut fabrics, biographic language, and intimacy. Although coy and feminine, these works are strikingly bold and challenging.

These first two artist’s works confront the entrant to the gallery space with material presence while the remaining two artist’s works become progressively minimalist, though no less emphatic of their interest in physicality. Blue Moon is a work by Julia Hundley which deals with fleeting images and non-materiality through these images lack of surface clarity. Screen shots of sunset advertisements and “unknown dik” pictures are projected onto a metallic emergency blanket which is draped in a blasé manner across a column-like outcropping. Hundley makes no attempt to hide the fact that some of the materials involved in the creation of her work are generated through clunky technology, namely a projector and simple motor mechanism. Instead, she allows these objects to contrast with the material actions they create; the projector box casts glittering, ephemeral light across an already shimmering surface, while the motor twirls a blue rose in a carefree motion which feels strangely sad in the very back corner of the gallery.

Linda Rucina’s three works deal with only three materials each; the two Studies consist of glass spheres on paper applied with an unspecified adhesive, and her piece Polyphony consists of nylon suede-tex fibers, glitter, and a yet again unspecified adhesive. Unlike Hundley’s piece, the visibly immaterial is here ignored in order to bring out the clarity of materiality. Rucina’s work displays an intense fascination with light, organic pattern, and texture.

In fact, the title of Rucina’s piece perfectly describes the cohesion of Début; it is a polyphony of aesthetics; a conglomerate of simultaneously combined parts, each with an individual melody and yet each harmonizing perfectly with the other. The show is open this saturday, March 28, and sunday, March 29 from 1:00 to 5:00pm. The Era VI VII VI project space is located at 676 Woodward Ave, Ridgewood, NY 11385.