Team (gallery, inc.) is pleased to announce Exotica, a show of new work by New York state-based sculptor Jo Nigoghossian. The exhibition will run from 08 June through 11 August 2017. Team Gallery is located at 83 Grand Street in New York.
For this exhibition, Nigoghossian has produced two grandly scaled sculptures. The works consist primarily of welded iron and steel, powdercoated grey andadorned with detail elements of colorful blown glass. The artist forges her ambitious, abstract forms from busy, entwined networks of black metal strips, more visually reminiscent of contour drawing than sculpture. Their generously sized structures are intended to constrict, re-frame and challenge navigation of the space.
Nigoghossian’s practice relies on the counterbalance of several apparent paradoxes. The works’ gestural, often erratic shapes seem to undermine the industrial materials’ integrity. Compositionally, the sculptures echo the approaches of German Expressionist painting and drawing, while sharing other aspects of their manufacture and aesthetics with Minimalism and Process Art. Their formal elegance and seeming intentionality is controverted by the experimental nature of the artist’s making, the trial-and-error approach demanded by her mode of production. Furthermore, the sculptures’ initial impression of near-mechanical material austerity is undermined by a closer inspection, which reveals roughly welded and soldered jointing and visible copper wires, clear evidence of the artist’s hand.
Nigoghossian intends these works for outdoor display, and accordingly conceived of the exhibition as something that strains against its containing walls, pushing towards the outside world. The conflation and juxtaposition of indoor and outdoor, organic and inorganic, is a crucial aspect of her practice. The sculptures’ forms were loosely inspired by a species of rare shrimp, whose bodies have both transparent and opaque elements, as well as complex and visible jointing and skeletal systems. Likewise, the artist seeks to build three-dimensional mass from lines, to turn void to density; the works’ empty spaces feel equally substantial to the heavy metal contours.
The show’s title, Exotica, refers to a genre of American music popular in the 1950’s and 60’s, which glorified the non-native experience of Southeast Asian and Oceanic cultures; the musicians were suburban Americans, and their impressions of the distant locales were purely fantasy, based on Western culture’s representations, rather than actual encounter. Nigoghossian’s own work, likewise, stems in part from a desire to create foreign objects from a familiar lexicon, to fabricate idiosyncratic, alien forms while referencing and employing established Art Historical modes of expression – which vary from Brutalist and Deconstructivist architecture, to Baroque painting, to Modernist European drawing, to the Abstract Expressionist sculpture of John Chamberlain.
Jo Nigoghossian has exhibited widely in galleries both in the United States and abroad. This is her first exhibition at Team Gallery.
Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10am to 6pm. Summer gallery hours, which begin on the 1st of July, are Monday through Friday, 10am to 6pm.