Quill Isn’t Staying Now features drawings and collages by Dani (Leventhal) ReStack and recent sculptures and photographs by Erin Woodbrey. This is a pairing of two artists whose conceptually leaning work inhabits a range of narrative qualities and ruminates on the relationships of people to each other and to the built and natural worlds. Sharing a steadfast curiosity and bewilderment, the work of Dani (Leventhal) ReStack and Erin Woodbrey reveals that the activity of making is also a process of learning and that learning happens through the everyday accumulation of moments; questioned and active.
Dani (Leventhal) ReStack is an Ohio-based visual artist who works in video, installation, and drawing. Her work is an examination of moments—collected, cut, pared down, and reassembled—that yield narratives both mundane and profound. Culling from her life and the lives of those around her, ReStack juxtaposes found and created images to produce secondary and tertiary landscapes that are challenging, beautiful, unnerving, and tender.
Through an intuitive process of collaging images and material, ReStack’s works on paper incorporate personal and found photographs, film stills, paper fragments, fur, found objects, and marks made in oil, wax, and watercolor. These works mirror the thematic overtones of her films, including an insistence on physicality and empathic experience. Her collages transform time-based notions into tactile and physical totems. By cutting and cropping images taken from her own videos, sculptures, and installations, her collages are assembled from cross-disciplinary materials, in the language of cinematic montage. Working with themes including childhood, aging, homelessness, sexuality, grief, and caregiving, her work reminds us what it means to be human: to care for, tend to, and create space for each other.
Erin Woodbrey’s work is the culmination of a cross-disciplinary practice comprised of photography, sculpture, printmaking, and video. Woodbrey’s work is presented, piece by piece, as an origin-based examination of fabricated and naturally occurring units of space and time. Her gaze, wide in scope and complex in curiosities, is trained on the interrelated qualities of process, materials, nature, and architecture, asking essential questions about how the functions of objects and nature inform, mirror, and tend to the human condition. Woodbrey’s work inquires about the maternal functions of made objects and the natural world: How does architecture support the body? How does physical earth frame human experience?
Included in this exhibition Woodbrey will show work from The Learners—a recent series of sculptures made from plaster, paper, photographs, and repurposed objects. Using chairs as the basic framework, The Learners, re-envisions the intended purpose of objects and seeks to open up possibilities for new ideas around use, value, comprehension, and consumption. In utilizing these found objects Woodbrey re-envisions their original purposes: with little added adornment, the results yield a silent yet penetrating dialog about reclaiming, unlearning, and engaging in a more careful consideration of our shared natural world.
Dani (Leventhal) ReStack (b.1972, Columbus, Ohio) is a multidisciplinary artist whose tactile videos, installations, and works on paper investigate sensorial and emotional states via juxtaposition and the intersection of individual stories. Culling from her own life and the lives of those around her, Leventhal’s images serve as an activity of excision and recontextualize personal narratives into a collective whole. Her video work has recently screened at the 2017 Whitney Biennial; Rotterdam International Film Festival; NYFF Projections; Oberhausen; The Ann Arbor Film Festival; UnionDocs; PS1; The Nightingale; Everson Museum; and Anthology Film Archives. Leventhal is the recipient of a Wexner Film/Video Residency Award, the Kazuko Trust, the Eileen Maitland Award and the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice Visual Arts Grant. In 2003 she received an MFA in sculpture from the University of Illinois at Chicago and in 2009 an MFA in film/video from Bard College. Her drawings are in the permanent collection of Yale University and the Museum of Modern Art, and she lives in Ohio, where she is Professor of Drawing at The Ohio State University.
Erin Woodbrey (b.1985, Portland, Maine) is a New England-based visual artist whose body of cross-disciplinary work—videos, photographs, prints, and sculpture—utilizes repetition, silence, and the physical isolation of organic and static elements to parse the linked qualities of quotidian experience. Woodbrey’s recent solo exhibitions include Time Mothers, Gaa Gallery, Provincetown, MA; Material Studies, Arena Gallery, Liverpool, United Kingdom; Air of Another Planet, Gaa Gallery, Wellfleet, MA; and Undercoat, Gallery 10, Truro, MA. Group exhibitions include, The Grass is Green, Gaa Gallery, Cologne, Germany; Beneath Metropolis, Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum, San Antonio, TX; Poetics of the Landscape, Gaa Gallery, Provincetown, MA; New Prints New Narratives, International Print Center, New York, NY; Video Trail Mix, Tritriangle, Chicago, IL; and For Love, Not Money, Kumu Art Museum, Tallinn, Estonia. Woodbrey received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2014, and her work is included in the public collections of Columbia College, Chicago; Provincetown Art Association and Museum, Provincetown, MA; and the Fundación´ace Art Collection, Proyecto’ace, Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is the recent recipient of the 2018 School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University Traveling Fellowship and fellowship from the Vermont Studio Center.