NEW YORK, NY.- Ki Smith Gallery
is presenting its inaugural exhibition at 712 West 125th Street, Sei Smith: Reflections 2. Smiths work fixates on the relationships between color, light, shadow, and atmosphere. In these new works, innumerable varieties of white surfaces highlight a deep neon glow. Though in conversation with artists such as James Turrell or Robert Ryman, they embody an inviting intellectual playfulness that widens the conversation of contemporary art.
Sei Smiths materials range from plexiglass to paint skins. Several of the multimedia pieces of Reflections 2 only exist if the viewer focuses a screen, momentarily, between herself and the canvas. Other works are more heavily dependent on visitor participation. New shadows, textures and colors are found as one moves a around the work. The show unfolds like a treasure hunt. For Smith, Reflections 2 is an investigation of painting and how far that term of the medium can be stretched, bent and played with.
The artist asks visitors to photograph the space, during the opening, using disposable cameras provided by the gallery. The closing reception will be composed solely of these photographs. Giving anyone the opportunity to participate in the exhibition, Sei wonders: Who is the artist? What is the art? Are those terms necessary in discussing contemporary art? Maybe the idea of an individual artist and singular experience of work is outdated.
Sei Smith (b. 1990, New York City) studied painting at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In 2012, he had his first solo show and started Apostrophe NYC in collaboration with his brother, Ki Smith. Apostrophe was both an art gallery and an experiment in curation. It notably staged guerilla pop-up shows in the stairwell of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the courtyard of MoMA PS1, and a Brooklyn subway station. Along with his art practice, Sei continues showing his work both nationally and internationally and curating shows and events in New York City.