Asya Geisberg Gallery is pleased to present "Embodied Energies", the third solo exhibition of installation artist Julie Schenkelberg. Expanding on her language of architectural decay, historical detritus, and domestic destruction, Schenkelberg will create a site-specific installation that will take over the gallery, as well as a series of smaller wall and floor works echoing elements of the larger work. The installation will traverse the polygon of the gallery walls, creating a variety of experiences for the viewer - encountering the expansive Rabelaisian work from the street, discovering the "back" or underside, exploring intimate nooks created by claustrophobic canopies, and stumbling on rubble piles.
Schenkelberg's ambitious oeuvre has strong antecedents in '70s artists such as Louise Nevelson, Gordon Matta Clark, and Louise Bourgeois. Her work seamlessly intersects the poignant interaction of material of contemporary artists like Jessica Jackson Hutchins with artists such as David Altmejd and Jason Rhoades who invent their own worlds, identifiable across media. Schenkelberg's unique point of view emanates from her immersion in Rust Belt decay, via material sourced from sidewalks and scrap heaps created by industrial demise. Construction and domestic materials such as wooden furniture, marble, silk, and dishware suggest the decaying glamour of a gloried era. Plaster, cement, and resin encases or spills out through slats, and sawed cuts and drilled holes overtake and defy solidity. While wistful in its references of discarded and abandoned wreckage, Schenkelberg's work, with its minutely crafted details and epic scope, nonetheless gives hope of rebirth for cities such as Detroit, Pittsburgh, and her native Cleveland. The cinders and ashes of broken homes and upturned lives become not just an epitaph for economic downturn but a deeply aesthetic excavation and reinvention.