*Preview: September 10th- 14th. 11am-5pm M-F. All other times by appointment.
Art-merge presents Lines of Desire, an exhibition of installations and works on paper by Los Angeles based artist Flora Kao. Composed of repeated actions such as sewing, crotchet and the obsessive layering of source material, the work in Lines of Desire hovers at the edge of restraint and collapse, appearing to come together and fall apart simultaneously. The artist utilizes the overlapping of time, place and personal memory to create beautiful and emotive work that explores the uniquely human impulse to apply order to chaos and to control that which ultimately cannot be controlled.
Central to the exhibition is Net, a diaphanous undulating form crocheted from one mile of vinyl tubing and spanning 200 square feet. Drawn in part from the artist’s painful recollection of the passing of her grandfather, the installation stands as part memorial and part meditation. In both the piece itself and in the colliding shadows it casts on the walls of the gallery, Net translates the trauma of witnessing incommensurable suffering into a visceral moment of stark and haunting beauty.
Showing in Art-merge’s closet galleries is artist Zelda Zinn. In the first closet gallery is Natural Selection, a series of black and white photographs inspired by the artist’s attempt to imitate the transience of clouds. The results of this exercise are a collection of serene, twisted membrane shapes shot starkly against a white background. Are they jellyfish? Plastic bags caught in wind or water? Paint or ink suspended in solution? Single cells or coacervates combing to create ever more complex structures? In each, Zinn catches her subjects at a moment of movement or mutation. Precisely shot and yet subjectively obfuscated, Zinn’s photographs impel the viewer to create stories of their own to fill in the blank spaces.
In the second Closet Gallery, Zinn exhibits two discrete series of work: Irresistable Air and Illuminated Letters.Illuminated Letters is a series of pencil on duralene drawings, inspired by the distinctive markings placed on the inner lining of security envelopes to obscure the contents within—markings which Zinn views as a form of “domestic camouflage.” In Irresistable Air, Zinn playfully transforms air pillows (the inflated balloons that will often accompany mail order goods) into a treatise on the transmission and reflection of light and the recitation of surface and shape. The artist joyfully twists and fashions these volumes into screens by which our own visions or the play of light and physics are able to unfold.