Mitchell-Innes & Nash is delighted to present Jessica Stockholder: The Guests All Crowded Into the Dining Room on view in our Chelsea gallery from August 25 through October 1, 2016. This will be the gallery’s third solo exhibition with the artist. Please join us for an opening reception Thursday, September 15, 6-8 pm.
The Guests All Crowded Into the Dining Room will feature works from several facets of Stockholder’s practice, including a large-scale site-responsive installation in addition to distinct bodies of studio works.
The studio-based works are made from both purchased and found materials, all of which are designed and manufactured by other people - furniture, plastic goods, fabrics, hardware, paint, paper. The line between a ‘raw’ material and ‘found’ object is blurry, and the intended-life of these objects is discarded but not forgotten. For example, a square of plastic floor and an orange rope are repurposed as formal, painterly elements, and yet their origins are clearly legible. The history and intended-use of these objects confront the viewer as Stockholder deftly engages the power of synergy, combining other peoples’ thoughts and objects into a form distinctly her own.
Many of the works on view relate to Stockholder’s ongoing project of Assists, sculptures which must attach to something other than themselves -- a bed, the wall, furniture, other sculpture, or appliances. Each Assist is made up of four parts: two base parts and two top parts. The bases and tops are interchangeable. The Assists have a symbiotic relationship with everything around them. With the Assists, Stockholder continues to explore questions of boundary, dependence, and response to the landscape of human-made things, notions which have been central to her practice to-date.
Stockholder says, “When I make something myself I have control over all of the details and can explore my thought process spontaneously as I go. When I hire someone to make something for me […] I utilize the systems embedded in other trades, people's thinking and production methods. And in all cases when the work is exhibited it is dependent on the exhibition context, which is replete with all kinds of meaning.”
While the show consists of many different materials and forms, each work is accepted as a coherent, composed whole. Stockholder prods at the gaps between nature and human-made objects, between authorship and anonymity, between art, manufacturing and craft. The result is a destabilizing dynamism that threatens to pull the center out past its edges.