Kala Gallery is proud to present Open Seas, a group exhibition that presents work by artists who explore the idea of borders from a wide range of perspectives. From political geography to psychological boundaries, the idea of borders can mean a line, an area, an arc, or a mark where something begins and something ends. When there is a border, a zone appears around this line. Inside the zone is like a chrysalis with a flexible shell. It is in constant flux and a transitional state. It expands on its own merging the edges of the outside. Often it is an area where human desire and curiosity – desire to see what’s not there and desire to change and transform, come to life and/or collapse constantly.
This exhibition asks artists to explore how borders —both atmospheric and conceptual—can be represented in a diverse reach of media.
Donna Brookman presents large-scale paintings titled Palace of Memory, part of a larger group of over 20 paintings. The sequence begins with melting glaciers, reflecting the permanent loss of structures and species that have existed for centuries. They mourn the irreversible crossing of a threshold through climate change, and the loss of worlds we barely know. Brookman received her MFA from San Francisco Art Institute and BA from University of California, Berkeley. She has exhibited her paintings nationally and internationally. Her work is represented by Thomas Paul Fine Art, Los Angeles. Gray Heron Press recently published Riverrun, a book featuring Brookman’s drawings and poetry by Anne Barrows.
Kristine Eudey’s photographic work Register Star examines how conquest and freedom are tied up in movement and our relationship to land and space. Eudey investigates the reality of human work alongside the mythology and spectacle to which these concrete efforts serve. Eudey received her MFA from California College of the Arts and BFA from University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Currently she is participating in the residency program Real, Time & Space in Oakland. She has a solo exhibition opening at n/a, Oakland in October.
Arash Fayez presents a three-channel video installation There Were Multiple Choices, But We Could Not Decide. Interweaving three different storytellers, Fayez questions the fabrication of truth and how we perceive a story, using various elements such as language and editing. Fayez received his MFA from California College of the Arts. His work has been exhibited at Musée du quai Branly, Paris; British Museum, London; Queens Museum, New York; and CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art, San Francisco. Fayez is the co-founder of doubleBread, a curatorial project based in San Francisco.
Alana Perino’s photographs explore the coming together of contradictory ideas like acceptance and freedom, privacy and openness, and restraint and possibility. Her photographs of the Israeli-Palestinian Territories seek to highlight the conflation of a divided identity and divided home. Borders, whether self-imposed or externally constructed by political and cultural forces, complicate and inform the subjects’ relationship with their environment. Perino received her BA from Wesleyan University, CT. Her photographs have been exhibited at A/NT Gallery, Seattle, WA; Gray Loft Gallery, Oakland, CA: Gallery 263, Cambridge, MA and additional venues.
Christie Ginanni Stepan investigates the denaturalization of boundary into path and vice versa. Her installation work presents various intersections and thresholds: a body crossing space, inside with outside, traces existing with present movement. These themes invite the viewer to engage in wondering about their own location, and to think about the implications of various types of boundaries that may determine, allow, or prohibit movement. Stepan received her MFA from San Francisco Art Institute and BA from Colorado College, CO. She participated in the Artist in Residence program at Scuola Internazionale di Grafica, Venice, Italy. Stephan is the Creative Director at Fancy Ink Press/Make Studio, Steamboat Springs, CO.
Rodrigo Valenzuela situates his creative practice within the contradicting traditions of documentary and fiction through video, photography and installation. He constructs narratives, scenes and stories, which point to the tensions found between the individual and communities. Suggesting gestures of alienation and ideas of displacement, he utilizes autobiographical threads to reflect on larger and perhaps universal fields of experience. Valenzuela received his MFA from University of Washington, WA, BA from The Evergreen State College, WA, and BFA from The University of Chile. He is a recipient of residency awards from Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts; Houston Museum of Fine Arts; Clark College; Vermont Studio Center. Exhibitions of his work include Frye Art Museum, Seattle, Contemporary Art Museum, Santiago, Chile, and many more.
Wenxin Zhang’s new project Beast by the Waterfall Guesthouse illuminates the loss and rediscovery of desire, and the evolution of curiosity and estrangement between childhood and adulthood. The photographic works are constructed in a non-linear story, in which the boundaries between animals and humans are blurred as well as the sense of time. Zhang received her MFA from California College of the Arts. Exhibitions include ATA Gallery, San Francisco; Gallery L1, Atlanta, GA; OBSCURA Festival 2014, George Town, Penang, Malaysia; Aperture Foundation, NY and more. She received a Magnum Foundation Atlantic Philanthropies Grant and a residency award from Rayko Photo Center, San Francisco. She will be participating in a residency program at The Center for Photography in Woodstock, NY.
Natalie Zimmerman & Michael Wilson present OCEANIA: Encounters at the Edge, a short preview of their documentary currently in production. OCEANIA spans opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean in search of what ties our fragmented histories, disparate experiences and future fates together. The film takes us from the North Pacific Coast, to the Republic of Kiribati, a group of coral atolls in the South Pacific Coast. At the intersection where the Equator and International Dateline meets, climate scientists predict that these low-lying islands will be uninhabitable by 2030 due to rising sea levels caused by climate change. Zimmerman holds an MFA from California Institute of the Arts. Her work has been presented in diverse contexts including: Moscow International Film Festival’s Media Forum, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Centro de la Imagen (Mexico City), Sigmund Freud Museum (Vienna). She is a former Fulbright Fellow, Headlands Center For the Arts Resident Fellow and was recently an Artist-in-Residence at the de Young Museum of Fine Art in San Francisco. Wilson received his MFA from Yale School of Art. His projects have been exhibited at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, San Francisco Documentary Film Festival, Ars Electronica, Entermultimediale, Chicago Underground Film Festival, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions and more. Wilson has taught at Pitzer College, UC-Riverside, UC-Irvine, Otis College of Art and Cal-Poly-Pomona.