Pae White: Material Mutters

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Still, Untitled, 2010 Cotton And Polyester 366 X 1219 Cm © Courtesy of the artist and SITE Santa Fe
Pae White: Material Mutters
Curated by: Gregory Burke

1606 Paseo de Peralta
87501 Santa Fe
June 18th, 2011 - September 18th, 2011

Mon-Tue 10-5
tapestries installation, installation


This exhibition surveys White’s works over the last five years with a focus on her monumental tapestries, which she has been producing since 2004. These tapestries highlight dynamic everyday objects and phenomena such as smoke and aluminum foil. The translation of these items – first into digital photographs, then into tapestries – creates compositions of abstract beauty that solidify the immaterial and encourage a re-examination of the familiar.

The interest in exploring the aesthetic possibility of humble materials is a thread that runs through White’s work. She has created dynamic and engaging sculptures and installations constructed from materials such paper and bird seed. Architecture, and an interest in activating space, are often a point of departure for her work. Her installation at the 2009 Venice Bienniale was likened to an aviary, replete with bird seed chandeliers and activated by performers trained in the traditional Venetian art of bird calling. Self-Roaming, the block long oceanfront project she created for the 2009 edition of Art Basel Miami Beach, was both sculpture and immersive environment and served as a hub of activity and a glowing beacon.

Material Mutters presents several tapestries in an installation designed by the artist specifically for SITE Santa Fe, including a new tapestry Sea Beast, commissioned by The Power Plant, Toronto and exhibited for the first time in the United States. The exhibition also includes video, sculpture, and works on paper. Dying Oak- Elephant and Wild Raspberry Bush are animations based on digital scans of flora. Her Smoke Studies series of works on paper appear to be drawings of smoke but in fact are laser carvings on paper. The unusual pairing of material and technique in these works is compelling.

Pae White’s works have been included in Skulptur Projekte Münster 07 (2007), the 53rd Venice Bienniale (2009), and the Whitney Biennial (2010). White has had solo exhibitions at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., and the Manchester Art Gallery, among others. She lives and works in Los Angeles.

Pae White: Material Mutters was curated by Gregory Burke. The exhibition is organized and circulated by The Power Plant, Toronto. SITE Santa Fe is the only U.S. venue for this exhibition.

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