Bill Mattick, Chris Sicat + Reenie Charrière
July 30 - September 12, 2010
Exhibit Opening | Thursday, July 29, 6-8PM
Bill Mattick, 2006-383(810) (2006), C-print, 39 x 33 inches
Swarm Gallery is thrilled to present the works of Bill Mattick, Chris Sicat + Reenie Charrière in the exhibit Land Use. The work in this show addresses issues of excess and resource modification.
Bill Mattick is a landscape photographer who has taken on social, political and ecological issues. His photographs read as objective evidence of the consequences of contemporary life: unbridled development, ecological abuses, and the myth of the American Dream. Embedded in his work are messages of land use effects and how this impacts the environment and human habitat.
Selections from two recent series will be presented in this exhibition: The Gardens of Los Angeles, part cautionary tale describing the excesses of humans on the landscape, and The Mendota Water Series. MENDOTA is proclaimed to be "....ground zero for the water problems in the greater San Joaquin valley."
Greater Los Angeles county and all of the surrounding counties, indeed most of southern California, is in service to the philosophy of urban sprawl and the notion that "more is better." The mega-city is densely inhabited, broken and shapeless. Mattick captures the bland spirit of its infirmities in a beautiful and cinematic way. Open vistas as far as the eye can see, urban detritus, and empty roads echoing the persistence of conurbation illustrate the surreal visual relationship between man-made and natural landscape.
Chris Sicat came from an interesting and diverse career in the arts in the Los Angeles area. Now locked in NorCal suburbia, Sicat wonders back to his creative roots - painstakingly "coloring" graphite on reclaimed wood. Working on chunks of wood of varied sizes and shapes, Sicat works the smooth surfaces with the strokes of a soft graphite pencil. In utilizing a form from nature and dedicating his attention to the drawing on it with another natural material, Sicat maintains his faithful commitment to working within nature. The transformation of the warm wood to a cool, reflective, silvery graphite surface, however natural it may be, is a radical shift. Visually stunning, yet eerie, his metallic looking trees and stumps almost appear to be a doomsday premonition; a ghost of once-living nature rendered inert.
Reenie Charrière continues her investigations into the juxtapositions of natural and synthetic aggregations. Every Tuesday the recycling truck comes by to crush the plastics and pick up what has been thrown in designated recycling bins. Her current work employs the small bits of plastic that donÕt make it there. Over time, Charrière has gathered these bits as a gesture to prevent harm to the environment and wildlife. In her studio, these accumulated leftovers are arranged in what she calls "sculptural drawings", playful and suspended site-specific installations that reflect ideas of gathering, repurposing, and exploring.