In the upcoming show at form & concept, Residency, fourteen artists from the US and Canada share their visions of the house – and all that goes in it – and its place in creating a sense of home. Opening Friday, August 26, Residency, features a” tiny house”, installed in the form & concept atrium by Santa Fe design/build company, Extraordinary Structures, led by Zane Fischer. The tiny house movement is a social movement where people are choosing to downsize the space they live in. The typical American home is around 2600 square feet, whereas the typical small or tiny house is between 100 and 400 square feet.
North Carolina-based artist Jeana Klein’s recent studio practice has coalesced around the broad theme of value: how society in general assigns value (or worthlessness) to objects, and how the art world, specifically, assigns value to works of art, craft and design. These ideas are made tangible through large mixed media quilts and tiny obsessive embroideries. The quilts draw—both visually and conceptually—on Klein’s infatuation with abandoned houses. She uses digital photography and inkjet printing to capture the reality of abandonment, superimposed with her painted imaginings of the house's’ former lives.
The artist explores abandoned houses to gather inspiration for her multi-media quilts. Later in the studio, she digitally merges and manipulates the photographic evidence scavenged from these forgotten homes. She then breaks these images apart and prints them piecemeal on recycled fabric: scraps from her late grandmother’s church quilting group, each with its own forgotten history. She stitches the pieces together to create compositional wholes before adding her own speculative story in acrylic paint. In the end, each piece is no longer image alone, but is image and object in quilt form.
Jason Ramey, a Minnesota-based sculptor creates work that straddles the spaces between art, craft and design. Writer Michelle Grabner says of Ramey’s art, “when one experiences Ramey’s work, his acknowledgement of the ill-defined space between art, craft, and design practice is not immediately apparent. That is his intention. On display in Residency is his piece, Attic, “made in reference to the small house in which I grew up. The house was a G.I home built after the war, me, my twin brother, and mother and father lived there.My father spent an inordinate amount of time in this attic with his smoking chair, woven round rug, and 60’s floor ash tray. I made this around the same time I began to think about marks or traces former inhabitants of a dwelling may leave. The attic was made from almost the exact tone/color of the ash I used for the piece. I always imagined that this was my father's favorite place even though it had very few redeeming qualities. The profiles in the piece are loosely based on my father's profile, made from an image of him from the 70’s.”
“I started saying ‘Well, I could make furniture and design furniture, but can I make something that really addresses my past, my history?’” he says. Drawing on personal narrative Ramey says in his artist statement that “growing up, I was often curious about who might have constructed the walls in my family home, and what type of people they were.” Were they like me? Are they still alive? “These walls weren’t just inane parts of my childhood home, they were my childhood.”
Artists in the show are Garth Amundson & Pierre Gour (WA), Debra Baxter (NM), Joanna Close (Canada), James Drake (NM), Extraordinary Structures (NM), Jeana Klein (NC), Mike Lagg (NM), Ted Lott (WI), Magsamen + Hillerbrand (TX), Jason Ramey (MN), Reside Home (NM), Ruby Troup (NM), Andrea Vail (NC), and Paula Wilson (NM).