Lisa Cooley presents No Barrier Fun, an exhibition exploring uses of the edges and the margin in recent art. The exhibition will run from July 9th until August 13th and will feature work by Jo Baer, Michael Bauer, Scott Calhoun, Peter Coffin, Francesca Fuchs, Heather Guertin, Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Ana Mendieta, Alex Olson, Alan Reid, Mark A. Rodriguez, and Dan Walsh. The exhibition will be on view from July 9 until August 13, with a reception for the artists on Friday, July 9, from 6 until 8 pm.
One common formal thread in recent work by young artists—and in some cases by representatives of an earlier generation—has been a determined concentration on edges and margins. Some of these artists build grids only to destabilize them through a reconsideration of their boundaries; others revive the tradition of the decorative border, or extend the active areas of their paintings up to or around their sides. These formal strategies have a variety of ideational and emotional effects, sometimes engendering and riffing on a feeling of intimacy, at other times accentuating the impression of infinite space. In these works, the border may come to represent a portal to another time or place, or it may assume the protective, containing role of a membrane, skin, or shell. Ultimately, No Barrier Fun is as much about the void or the space of potential as it is about the barrier itself, as much about the interior as that which surrounds it. The edge, it proposes, may be both an ending and a beginning.
In Scott Calhoun’s abstract painting, edges are as alive with energy and detail as is the center, while Michael Bauer and Ana Mendieta use borders to define suggestions of narrative action. Francesca Fuchs’ pictures-within-pictures play on our expectations of compositional convention, and in paintings by Heather Guertin and Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, the usual relationship of image to frame is reversed via physical switches and additions. Peter Coffin’s perfomance Untitled (Circle Drawing), positions visitors to the gallery at the physical center of the work, while the rings of color in Jo Baer’s painting on paper exploring the development of letterforms both emphasize the edges of the work and define open spaces within it. Alan Reid makes use of frames as additional arenas for painterly storytelling, while Dan Walsh and Alex Olson distribute the tension in their abstract works evenly between center and periphery. Finally, Mark A. Rodriguez mimics architectural structures to emphasize and reflect on the viewer’s own position.
The gallery is located at 34 Orchard Street between Hester and Canal in the Lower East Side of New York City. The closest subway is the East Broadway stop of the F line. Gallery hours will be Tuesday through Friday from 11 am until 6 pm for July and August. For more information or images, please email the gallery at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212-680-0564.