Curator: Tamar Tembeck
November 5 – December 17, 2016
Saturday, November 5 at 5 pm
Performance at 6 pm
Saturday, December 17 at 3 pm
with Mary Sherman and Tamar Tembeck
The exhibition Dream Mechanics presents selected works by the American artist Mary Sherman. Though solidly grounded in her practice as a painter, Sherman’s aesthetic approach offers a sensory and spatial expansion of the territory of painting. By introducing diverse kinetic and auditory elements to the experience of her works, Sherman gives flesh to the unsuspected synaesthesia of the painterly medium. Whereas at the height of 20th-century American Modernism, painting was thought to exalt the two-dimensional qualities that are proper to it (according to the art critic Clement Greenberg), for Sherman, her abstract works present a polysensorial potential that rather begs a more expansive approach.
All the while referring to the history of modern art (notably through her choice of titles, which pay tribute, amongst others, to the Dadaists), Sherman’s practice is distinctly contemporary and reliant upon present-day technologies. Her paintings, characterized by generous impasto, appear to borrow from the tradition of tachisme, but their mechanical animation gives them a mobile and sculptural presence in space that detaches them from the habitual fixity of a wall hanging. The resulting environments generate qualities that are at times playful, at times dreamy. Within Sherman’s work, the field in which painting is experienced extends well beyond the eye, awakening the tactile, auditory and kinaesthetic senses of its viewers.
Mary Sherman is an artist and the director of the artists-run TransCultural Exchange, which she founded in Chicago in 1989. (She also teaches at Boston College and Northeastern University and, in 2010, served as the interim Associate Director of MIT’s Program in Art, Culture and Technology). Additionally, for two decades, while pursuing her career as an artist, she worked as an art critic for such publications as The Chicago Sun-Times, The Boston Globe and ARTnews. She has received numerous grants and awards, including two Fulbright Senior Specialist Grants and been an artist-in-residence at such institutions as MIT and the Taipei Artist Village. Her own works, which push the definition of painting into the realm of space and sound, have been shown at numerous institutions, including Taipei’s Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Beijing’s Central Conservatory, Vienna’s WUK Kunsthalle, Trondheim’s Academy of Fine Arts at the University of Science and Technology, Seoul’s Kwanghoon Gallery and New York’s Trans Hudson Gallery. http://www.marysherman.org
Tamar Tembeck is a performing artist and independent curator who holds a PhD in Art History. Her academic research primarily engages with visual cultures of illness and medicine, hospital art practices, as well as performance and media studies. Trained in dance and physical theatre, Tamar has performed in Quebec and the United States, as well as in France, Spain, England, Switzerland and Mexico. As a curator, she presented the group exhibition Auto/Pathographies, shown at the Kunstpavillon (Innsbruck) and at OBORO (Montréal), documented in a publication with Sagamie édition d’art in 2014. Since 2012, she has been working within an interdisciplinary media studies research hub at McGill University. http://www.tembeck.org
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