Black & White Gallery/Project Space is proud to present Travelers and Settlers by Nancy Friedemann-Sánchez.
Nancy Friedemann-Sánchez’s sprawling installation Travelers and Settlers is an exploration of identity, memory, and gender. It represents the third chapter of the multi-narrative visual novel the artist has been working on for some time about cultural memory, migration and the pursuit of the American dream. The installation consists of paintings, sculptures, objects and mixed media that together and in different voices weave a synchronicity of dialogues, passages, punctuations, silences about hybridity and cultural ownership. Formally, these images are anchored in Minimalism as a dominant ideological umbrella and allude to the Pattern and Decoration Movement as well as Spanish Colonial Painting. By including family heirlooms alongside carved wood boats and black mirror-like panels that hold pearled sconces, the artist creates an environment that is beautiful, engaging, and introspective. Born in Colombia, Friedemann-Sánchez has lived and worked in both Bogotá and New York and now resides between Brooklyn, NY and Lincoln, Nebraska. Her work creates narratives that describe lives of spiritual and physical transit and expresses the dichotomy of living in between cultures and languages.
Anchored in feminism, my art is infused by American and Colombian cultural forms that are dominant or subordinate. My art is a bicultural and transcultural experience; it speaks of difference, of opposites. Having grown up in Colombia and having migrated to the US as an adult. I make art in two languages about the curious and intense experience of physically having migrated, yet having a piece of myself remaining rooted in Colombia. I create visual expressions of that syncretism that has taken place since the conquest of the Americas and that gets replicated in the migration experience.
I see my art as multi-layered: it is political as it is personal. It is intricately interrelated with my domestic and work responsibilities; and with the supporting and administration of family and career. My options of life are integrated ethically in my art as I reflect and challenge the roles that historically have been assigned to women, in terms not only in the division of labor but also in the division of artistic and intellectual spaces.
The intensive labor in making each work is about slowness, feeling and thinking; it is about doing a work that honors manual labor and where the artist manages an economy of materials. Each mark is indelible. Not erasing –using enamel on a pristine industrial surface- is an important and deliberate act as an echo of the trajectory, the steps that one takes one by one in time and space. Poetically, the impossibility of erasing is a metaphor of the liminal threshold that connotes both existing in exile and voyaging into a transformation of ones cultural DNA, a chain reaction that is assumed through time in existential and spiritual terms.
Nancy Friedemann-Sánchez has been awarded a Nebraska Arts Council Artist Fellowship for her recent work, a Smithsonian Artist Fellowship, a Pufffin Foundation Grant, Pollock Krasner Grant and National Association of Latino Arts and Culture Grant. She has been nominated to the Rema Hort Mann Foundation and the Anonymous Was a Woman Foundation. Her work was selected for the Elisabeth Sackler Feminist Art Base at the Brooklyn Museum in New York. She is a member of the Artist Pension Trust since 2009, represented Colombia at the 20 Congreso Internacional: La Experiencia Intelectual de las Mujeres en el Siglo XXI in 2012 and the USA at La Bienal de Cuenca, Ecuador in 2009. Notable museum shows include Portland Museum of Art, The Museum of the University of New Mexico, El Museo del Barrio, New York, Museo del Arte de Puerto Rico; University at Albany Art Museum, Biblioteca Luis Angel Arango, Bogotá, San Luis Obispo Art Center, California, Bronx Museum of the Arts, Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska and Sheldon Art Museum, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Her work is in the collections of Karen and Robert Duncan, Jose Mugrabi, El Museo del Barrio, Cleveland Museum, The Museum University of New Mexico, El Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Panamá, El Museo de Arte Moderno, Cali Colombia, and el Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Bogotá, Colombia. She has been a resident at Art OMI, New York, Fountainhead, Miami, Tamarind Institute, New Mexico, Yaddo, New York, Gasworks, Triangle Arts Trust, London, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Nebraska, Bronx Museum for the Arts, New York, Taller Arte Dos Gráfico, Bogotá and The Sheldon Art Museum, Lincoln, Nebraska.
Friedemann-Sánchez has been reviewed by El Nuevo Herald, New York Magazine, New York Times, Artforum, The Paris Review, Time Out, Art Paper, Art Nexus, El Espectador and Revista Semana among others.
Nancy Friedemann-Sánchez has a Master’s Degree from New York University, a BFA from Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles, California and attended undergraduate studies at La Universidad de Los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia.
Travelers and Settlers is Nancy Friedemann-Sánchez’s first exhibition at Black & White Gallery/Project Space. The exhibition travels from the Museum of Nebraska Art in Kearney, Nebraska where it is on view from January 9 – April 3, 2016 as part of Nebraska Now museum programming.