In LaMontagne Gallery's first year there has been a lot of thought and discussion about the collaborative elements of maintaining the beginning and growth in relationships. LaMontagne Gallery is pleased to present our summer exhibition, DEEP IN THE HEART OF SOUTHIE, an observation on interpersonal relationships through different media and narratives. RONNIE BASS, NINA BEIER and MARIE LUND, ALEJANDRO CESARCO, SAMUEL EKWURTZEL + TIFFANY SUM, LAURA HARRISON, KIKI SEROR, JESSICA WILLIAMS and ANDREW WITKIN approach this topic; through painfully close inspections and take pause to reflect on why people relate to one another and how these profound connections can effect all aspects of living.
Ronnie Bass (b. 1976, Hurst, TX) is a New York based visual artist and musician. He received an MFA from Columbia University and a BFA from the University of North Texas.
In this particular video piece, Our Land, is a hope that people may escape, or find contentment within, oppressive social and economic situations. Our Land explores social utopias, fringe religions, new inventions, black box technologies, tactics of late capitalism, and friendship.
Nina Beier and Marie Lund (London, UK) in their ongoing video project ‘the Play me series’ Nina and Marie set up abstract games for different groups of people to play out. Each task focuses on the space between the individual and the group. Based on references to social games and customs, rules, traditions and mannerisms, most of the projects impose certain limitations onto the individuals by challenging their sense of personal space and free will. In doing so they provoke the sense of self in the participants and their reactions to being part of a group.
Alejandro Cesarco (b. 1975 in Montevideo, Uruguay) is a Brooklyn based artist who's main interest is to explore language and how meaning is re- contexualized through memory.
The emphasis in producing the work is not placed primarily on the transmission of information, but rather on how meaning is felt. Cesarco's work is constructed by cataloging, classifying, appropriating, reading, misreading and retelling other people's stories.
Since 1998 he has exhibited at, among other places, Leslie Tonkonow Artworks+Projects, New York; El Museo del Barrio, New York; Socrates Sculpture Park, Long Island City, NY; and The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, NY.
Samuel Ekwurtzel (CT) + Tiffany Sum (CA) met during the summer of 2007 at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Skowhegan, Maine. Together they worked together to build submersible speakers and installed them in a popular swimming area. The installation was carried out discreetly and anonymously so that swimmers would encounter the piece unknowingly. Music by deaf artists/ composers/ singers was broadcast underwater for the duration of the installation, two hot weeks in August. Through bone conductivity, swimmers were given the sensation of thinking music, rather than conventionally hearing music. Thus, Lake Intervention truly challenged the legitimacy of our physical sensations by making the act of hearing involuntary (plugging ones ears does not block out the sound). Photographs show participants synchronized in the act of listening. Apparent in the images is the intimacy of this particular group of swimmers and their awareness of a shared sense of hearing.
Laura Harrison's (Boston, MA) work examines different approaches to surface. Harrison plays with patterning of Architectural facades, decor and stage sets to develop multi layered paintings that camouflage text, distort figures and twist meanings. Harrison has exhibited recently at Mario Diacono Gallery (Boston, MA), Paul Sharpe Contemporary Art (NY).
Kiki Seror’s graphic texts (NY, LA), transcribed from actual web chat rooms and backlit by a light box, lure the viewer into participation. Juxtaposing art and technology, gender and identity, fantasy and desire, Kiki Seror’s work transforms the explicit language of cybersex into dazzling and disturbing digital images and animated projections.Seror has been shown internationally and most recently exhibited at I-20 (NY), White Box (NY).
Jessica Williams, recently completed her BFA at Cooper Union (NY) and completed "I'm Too Sad To Tell You (after Bas Jan Ader)" was originally conceived as a project to create an archive of self-portraits taken while crying. The images were to be displayed online on a website and then later made into a book. An open call was posted on the photo sharing community Flickr.com asking people to submit their crying self-portraits over the period of one month.
Andrew Witkin (Boston, MA) contributes a piece that has been in development since last spring when a bird made a nest on his porch. This object represents a simple and complex nurturing relationship. Witkin's practice consists of textual and theoretical research, geographic exploration, an intense commitment to conversation, along with more traditional modes of art-making such as video, audio, photo, drawing, sculpture and design-based works.
Andrew Witkin was named one of the four finalists for the 2008 James and Audrey Foster prize at ICA Boston and has an upcoming exhibition at LaMontagne Gallery in early 2009.