Monday, February 14, 2011

New Curatorial Project

The Hive Archive and the Hera Gallery asked me to curate a window exhibit in the University of Rhode Island Library in downtown Providence with the loose theme of feminism. The window exhibit dovetails with Hera and the Hive's retrospective show entitled Cross Currents. You can see what I came up with in the month of March, until then here is a little preview.

Politics is the art of the possible. Otto von Bismarck. 1868

Feminism is a political stance. Feminism expands what is possible. Instead of the von Bismarck quote that begins this statement, in this exhibition I am using poet, activist, and essayist Adrienne Rich concept of the Arts of the Possible. Rich believes that newness and social change are made through connective creative acts. Like Rich, I see the challenge of the von Bismarck quote to be: How do we make more things possible? In this spirit I invited artists and writers, who’s work builds new lexicons of imagery and troubles well-worn parameters. Creativity can supersede cultural conventions, but when it is really effective it expands what is possible artistically, personally and politically.

This grouping of artists and writers reveals their similarities slowly. All the artists see humans as fantastic creatures capable of dark and delicate ruminations. Each artist sees through a warped mirror. They individually build new worlds of wonder or disquieted longing. Collectively they speak of the fantastic and imagined body, as a metaphor and method to promulgate questions of gender and ethical living.

Kyla Zoe Rafert, creates odd Victorian domestic settings populated almost exclusively with pensive young women. Much like the protagonist in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's classic feminist novella the Yellow Wallpaper, they are subsumed into the domestic patterns that decorate their seemingly sedate parlors. Rafert is a consummate printmaker. Formally, her etchings highlight her dead-on draftsmanship and beauty and the eeriness of brutally made marks.

Marissa Paternoster forges dark worlds. With thousands of tiny lines she builds figures that are equal parts post-modern mannerism and cartoon nightmare. Paternoster’s work ceaselessly confronts the viewer with a pained and elusive slippery subject. Her bodies are disjointed and without firm boundaries. In her work gender becomes a horrible carnival ride where desire and etiquette reveal their disgusting and abhorrent origins.

Amy Squires
uses the body as her subject. In her site-specific installations and two-dimensional works, she takes traditional feminine tropes and inverts and celebrates them. Her work is influenced as much by minimalism as it is the Feminist Art movement of the 1970’s. Her work is inherently interdisciplinary and encompasses the contradictions of combining corporeality with immateriality.

Natalie Northrup, is devoted to the poetry of formalism. Her work is stridently handmade, revealing the labor inherent to fine art and women’s traditional handwork. Beyond that her work on paper and fabric pieces speak of brevity and abjectness in the same breath. Her roughly hewn marks refuse to be refined or controlled. Her marks read like an untidy Emily Dickenson poem. Her puckered and pulled fabric work reveals the ambiguity between preciousness and benign neglect. She finds the power of ambiguity.

Arthur Middleton
, as a writer traverses unmarked paths guided by his heart light. Though seemingly straightforward his work is not simple. He mines lost historical and imagined modern spaces to find passionate, radical, and tender domesticity. He does not write to come to terms with the world. He writes new worlds into existence.

, reclaims portraiture as a vibrant contemporary art form. His work is global. It can be found on the streets of Japan, Korea, the USA, France, China and Germany. His work humanizes and commemorates individuals moving though the global diaspora. His oversized and painstakingly drawn portraits of immigrants and other dislocated subjects are found in indistinguishable urban sprawls. His work reveals the human politics of place and displacement while meshing socially engaged street art with magical realism.

Author Joanna Ruocco and artist Sarah McDermott maintain an ongoing collaboration across disciplines and time zones. McDermott deftly draws and prints sinuous lines onto textured papers. This saturation of information, both graphic and tactile, dovetail with Roucco’s dexterous uses of language and her flexible and creative lexicon. McDermott illustrated Ruocco’s book The Mothering Coven (Ellipsis Press). Their latest joint effort is the book Compendium of Domestic Incidents. They are 2/3rds of a collective that publishes Birkensnake, an experimental fiction journal.

Delia Kovac
February 2011

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Doodle Drag

I took a trip to dear dear New Jersey in January. I participated in the first DOODLE DRAG event. More pictures of the event on Joydropper.

Doodle Drag is an open art event collaboration thing created by my pals Marissa and LNY.
They just posted there first open call.

Such a simple joyful idea. Do it.

Why do we always end up drawing by ourselves? Combat isolation I say.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Wet Walls/ Winter Woes.

I live in the Northeastern United States. It has been an amazingly wet winter. There seems to be a cycle of snow, freezing rain and back to snow. There are large unyielding piles of snow on the edges of all the streets in Providence. A wee bit ago, I noticed that my dry wall wasn't so dry, in fact it was soft. Cutting into the wall to investigate we found what we thought was black mold. Horrors! We brought in a mold expert who ripped apart the wall further to reveal no mold, just wet walls. We are letting them breath and dry.

I moved all my materials behind a makeshift plastic wall as a precaution. It kinda looks like that scene from ET.

I know there is no normal. But I am looking forward to getting my studio up and running.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Refugee Reading Room @ Space 1026

I have a piece in a The Refugee Reading Room at Space 1026 organized by the incomparable Amze Emmons.
February 4th – 25th, 2011

I mailed off 125 free multiples. Get them while they last.
I will post about my piece after the opening.

Here's a peek

show info below.

Space 1026

1026 arch street 2nd floor,

philadelphia, PA 19107


Opening - please come if you are able

Friday, February 4th, 7-10 PM

February 4th – 25th, 2011

In response to an invitation to exhibit at Space 1026, I proposed an exhibition in which a post utopian installation would serve as a distribution point for free publications by a host of other artists, designers, cartoonists and illustrators. After months of planning that project is about to become real.

It is my hope that this exhibition will transform the gallery space, sparking new relationships between creators and audience, and that this will lead to a range of interesting interdisciplinary connections within an experimental gift economy. This arrangement is obviously informed by my own aesthetic, but I think the conceptual connections between print, community, and utopian experiments are made stronger when put in conversation with architectural phenomena and notions of displacement.

This installation will feature works by the following contributors:

Kjellgren Alkire

Art Codex

Pat Aulisio

Mike Bauer

Diana Behl

Book Bombs -- Mary Tasillo and Michelle Wilson

Jamison Brosseau

Ellie Brown

Natalie Campbell

Tova Carlin

Chain Magazine

Cece Cole

CA Conrad

Ryan Dodgson

Josh Doster

Angela Earley

Faesthetic Magazine

Jedd Flanscha

Casey Grabowski

Geoff Hargadon

Lauren Haldeman

Kay Healy

John Hitchcock

Holly Holly Hobby Hobby

Matt Hopson-Walker

Chad Kouri

Delia Kovac

Andy Kozlowski

Michelle Levy

Max Liboiron

Lumpen Magazine

The Machete Group

Margin Detail

Kembrew McLeod

Megawords Magazine

Andrew Moeller

The Moving Crew


Matt Neff

Heidi Nelson

Never Nothing

Scott Nobles

Notice Notice

Michael Perrone

Sarah Nichole Phillips

Greg Pizzoli

Poetry Magazine

The Post Family

Proximity Magazine

Ian Sampson

Carrie Scanga

Jonthan Skinner/EcoPoetics

David Tallitsch

Danielle Tegeder

Temporary Services

RL Tillman

Breanne Trammell

Pointed Press-- Tricia Treacy & Katie Smith

Frank Sherlock

Eli VandenBerg

Jenna Weiss

Brian Wiggins

Jing Yu

Match Zimmerman

And many more

Audio Soundscape composed by Scott Sherk

In her seminal book of essays, The Poethical Wager, Joan Retallack builds a complexly beautiful argument that in tumultuous times one should model the world in which they wish to live. In some small way this project aspires to be such a model.