Residency Projects I
Kala Fellowships are awarded annually to nine innovative artists working in printmaking, photography, book arts, installation, video and digital media. Fellowship artists are selected from a competitive field of applicants from North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Australia and Asia. Recipient artists receive a financial award and up to six-months residency at Kala’s studio facility followed by an exhibition of their new work. The Kala Gallery is proud to present the first of our two-part exhibition series, Residency Projects, featuring work by our 2010-2011 Fellowship artists. The Kala Directors in association with juror Jens Hoffman, curator and Director of the Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts at the California College of the Arts, selected the artists.
Residency Projects II will open on September 8, 2011 with new works by Kala Fellows Elisheva Biernoff, Renee Gertler, Jessica Ingram and Zachary Royer Scholz.
Maude Léonard-Contant‘s mixed-media sculpture installation titled, I don’t know when it became a cult – and that bothers me, finds its inspiration in the aesthetic of mortuary parlors. The central image in the installation is a palm tree. Historically, the symbolic palm tree motif has had a variety of interpretations ranging from victory and martyrdom, to peace, plenitude and spiritual oasis. In Maude’s serious yet campy installation, the image serves as a pretext to create a fusion between the anteroom of death and the world of art. Pedestals, pillars, reliquaries, showcases and salons harmoniously mesh in the pacifying smell of incense. She is a resident of Montreal and received additional funding from Canada Council for the Arts.
Youngsuk Suh presents a series of large-scale, color photographs from the second phase of his Wildfires project. Youngsuk initially began this project in 2008 as a response to the more than one thousand California wildfires started by a series of lightning strikes in early June of that year. His new series of photographic prints presents images of “controlled burns” conducted by local fire management authorities throughout California. This practice of controlling fire with fire is rooted in the diversification of fire management policies of recent years. The traditional notion of fire as a destructive physical force that needs to be fought, has given way as a result of diverse studies that have uncovered the complex role of fire in the ecosystem. Youngsuk’s photographs of these prescribed or controlled burns explore the notion of fire as a complex human measure, in works that are menacing yet elegant. Youngsuk teaches photography at University of California, Davis and received The James Irvine Foundation-funded fellowship at Kala.
Genevieve Quick presents various mixed-media works that reference NASA’s unmanned exploratory vehicles that were sent to Mars in the 1970s and again in 2003. Genevieve has meticulously reconstructed a replica of NASA’s equipment as a pristine white foam core sculpture, with movable components. The sculpture, titled T2 Lander, appears in a series of photographic stills and also in a stop-motion video animation. The animation references NASA’s use of desert locations as equipment test sites intended to simulate the harsh environment found on Mars. The project also includes Analogue Missions, a series of light box drawings that depict image-making devices, created through a reductive drawing process that employs blue graphite transfer paper. Genevieve recently received a CCI Investing In Artists Grant and will be presenting her work in a residency project at the de Young Museum later this year.
Frances Young presents pieces from the current project Forever Is Over Again, a series of moving image works and photographic prints which investigate place and medium in relation to time; exploring spatio-temporal fluidity and disjuncture; movement and stasis; permanence and transience. Material for the project was recorded in various locations around the San Francisco Bay Area during my residency at Kala, using a variety of digital video formats; Super 8 film; 35mm & digital photography. Frances Young would like to thank the operators of the Giant Camera, San Francisco, for their assistance and permission to film there.