NEW YORK, N.Y.- The FLAG Art Foundation
is presenting two exhibitions: Art², a group exhibition on the 9th floor, and Jane Hammond: Fallen, a monumental ongoing installation consisting of over 4,000 unique handmade leaves each inscribed with the name of a American soldier killed in the war in Iraq, on the 10th floor. The two exhibitions will be on view through December 17, 2011.
The title of the exhibition Art² refers to the use of a specific and existing artwork in the visual language of an original contemporary artwork. The featured artists re-imagine, or incorporate, these past works by artists from their own generation as well as from decades, or even centuries, before. Whether a literal transcription or a point of departure, these works explore the constant flux of art and ultimately demonstrate ways in which our visual history informs our present.
While Barry X Balls sculpture, Purity, directly references Antonio Corradinis sculpture titled La Purità (c.1720-25), Ball adds and subtracts subtle details in composition and medium. His sculptural process involves a complex array of cutting edge technology and procedures, including 3-dimensional scanning, digital modeling, and computer-controlled milling, as well as traditional modes such as detailed hand carving and polishing.
In Wild Horses, Glenn Brown distorts Jean Baptiste-Greuzes Innocence (c.1790), a portrait of a young woman with a cherub-like face, draped in a swath of fabric tenderly cradling a lamb in her arms. Brown transforms the seemingly romantic image of purity and youth into a contemporary representation of the bizarre and the fantastic; the womans eyes have no pupils and her flesh morphs into swirling brushstrokes of acid yellow, and the lamb is displayed as vivid red with green eyes. By recontextualizing and mutating the original image, Browns masterful technique imbues it with another reading, inviting the viewer to examine the medium, the subject and the notion of beauty.
Awol Erizkus Girl with a Bamboo Earring reimagines Johannes Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring (c. 1665) in contemporary life. Erizku depicts the sitter in the same pose and attire as Vermeer's subject, but replaces the recognizable Dutch female with an African-American female. That Erizku rewrites this iconic image emphasizes and draws critical attention to cultural and social constructs embedded in art history.
Jane Hammonds Fallen
The FLAG Art Foundation is also presenting Jane Hammonds Fallen, a monumental ongoing installation on which the artist has worked continuously for seven years. This poignant memorial consists of a low rectangular platform layered with a vast multitude of brilliant fall leaves.
Each leaf is unique, handmade by the artist, and inscribed by her with the name of a U.S. soldier killed in Iraq. This exhibition at the FLAG Art Foundation begins with 4455 leaves.
As a memorial, Hammonds Fallen is unusual in that it emphasizes the singularity of each individual by making his or her leaf unique. The light and delicate materials subvert the traditional expectations of enduring materials such as bronze and stone in favor of an expression of the fragility and ephemerality of life.
The artist has said: There is something about leaves in the autumn, at the zenith of their coloration that is transcendent: they are both dematerializing and intensifying simultaneously. As their bodies become lighter, their color is becoming more and more radiant. Ive tried to gather leaves just at this moment when the chroma is so strong it transcends the body of the leaf and becomes a kind of pure light. It rhymes with the idea of the spirit but in a way that is accessible and earthly. Its more Emerson than Aquinas.
Born in Bridgeport, CT in 1950, Hammond received her BA from Mount Holyoke College in 1972
and her MFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1977. Her work can be found in over
50 major public collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of
Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Chicago Art Institute, the National Gallery of
Art and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Hammond currently lives and works in New
York and is represented by Galerie Lelong.