The work of Arielle Falk relies on the symbiosis of obliteration and
reconstruction.  Our collective notions of fantasy metaphorically melt away
under Falk’s guidance; orange sunsets, lush palm trees, and serene blue
water, char and shrivel in this new body of work. Originally meant as wall
ornamentation, Falk undermines the nature of oversize seascape murals.  By
applying extreme heat to the surfaces, Falk carefully destroys these
photographic depictions of beach paradise.  The subsequent wilted remnants
create a new medium for restoration; twine is also introduced as a vehicle
for transfiguration.  Leafy branches disintegrate and regenerate all at
once as the burnt photo scraps are fastened back together. In some
instances, the image is almost completely dissolved, leaving only the twine
to recreate the picture plane. In other materializations, the string is
anchored to the gallery floor, lifting the mural fragments away from the
wall. The culminating form mimics a nautical sail, billowing
three-dimensionally and sculpting the space both in front and behind it.
These crippled daydreams hover in front of the viewer as a reminder of flux
and desire.
          Akin to Falk’s mode of linear expression, Robbie McDonald’s
sculptural works define space with scribbles of light.  An array of neon
“fountains” form the perimeter of the gallery space. The base of the pieces
are built from anodized aluminum baseball bats.  The anodizing process of
electrochemically coating a durable color finish on metal becomes a
significant metaphor.  McDonald figuratively animates this concept of
electrification by oozing neon light the same pigments as the bats,
shooting out from the bases and arching back down toward the floor. At
times the baseball bats are stacked and mirrored double high, creating an
undulating totem-like form. The neon continues this undulation but with
more freedom; the loose mark-making in space defies the rigid nature of its
physicality. The neon drawings illuminate the room in correspondent RGB
color model hues from reds to greens to blues. McDonald’s wall-mounted
pieces implement Gore-Tex, a material often used for outdoor recreation
equipment. The artist subverts this material by draping it off the wall and
layering it in energetic shapes. A lively mark of neon light weaves through
the flaps of breathable, waterproof fabric. A new experience is created for
the viewer in which flat darkness is pierced with an articulation of
phosphorescent glow.  McDonald’s work holds a powerful physical presence;
drastically transforming the space around it.  In the aftermath, the viewer
is left to contemplate the enveloping luminosity of the gallery against the
cold hard metal of the baseball bats. The threat of violence thwarted by
the overflowing energy of light.

 
Bibliography Section Article Bibliography Section Catalog Bibliography Section Web Link PDF icon displayed by thumbnail Sold Dot