Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Marie Alarcón's video installation show, BANISHED, opens February 10, 6-9pm

Opening reception: Friday, Feb. 10, 6-9pm, refreshments served

Additional viewing times: Fridays Feb. 17, 24, & March 2, 3-7pm

Location: 40ST AIR Gallery, 4007 Chestnut St, 1st floor

Marie Alarcón is a Philadelphia-based video and installation artist. Her videos are collages of texture and light, often set in the majestic natural environs of eastern Pennsylvania. Inspired by liminality, hybridity and memory, her work is influenced by gender and race and pushes to create new mythologies rather then create "true histories."

Through the use of surreal effects created by pushing the capabilities of the camera itself, she creates intense dreamscapes and fantastical visions in which the viewers can lose themselves. Alarcón also teaches non-fiction and documentary workshops to both youth and adults, and has been involved in community media for the past 10 years.

Banished is a curation of Alarcón's short video and installation pieces dealing with transformation. The idea behind Banished is both cathartic expulsion and violent removal, sometimes initiated by the subject, and at other times imposed by another.

Alarcón will be screening her most recent piece MAGIcicada, a 5 minute video that follows a magical ritual of transformation created through live action, animation, and video collage. She will also premiere She Lost Her Wings Before She Could Fly, a video of devotion and the realities it obscures.

Check out the teaser: http://mariedaphnie.tumblr.com/

Monday, January 23, 2012

Great Press about Invitational Opening!

(photo of Celestine Wilson Hughes' "Black Madonna" and "Women of the World do not Drown in Three Feet of Water" taken by Emma Eisenberg)

The following article by Emma Eisenberg testifies to the excellent "Friends and Neighbors, Artist Invitational" opening 40st had on January 13.


40th St Artist Invitational opening is great success

Posted January 16, 2012

Despite the cold, the intimate gallery space at 4007 Chestnut was filled to the gills Friday night to see new work by West Philadelphia visual artists. The invitational format of the show, in which the artists currently in residence at the 40th Street Artist-in-Residence Program invited other artists whose work they admire, made for a diverse and full bodied show. Althea Baird’s tracing paper and india ink print (pictured left) was a highlight, bearing resemblance to a sepia toned photograph, and spoke to, in her words, “our body’s ability to remember.”

Other favorites were Corina Dross’ detailed portraits of graphic artist Lynda Barry and writer Zora Neale Hurston, designed to look like oversized playing cards, and Celestine Wilson Hughes’ bold glass sculptures “Black Madonna” and “Women of the Universe Do Not Drown in Three Feet of Water” (pictured below) which were shaped like cabinets containing human hearts and were reminiscent of Mexican folk art’s raw renditions of love and death. ”They have to do with women, and with fear,” said Hughes during the brief artist talk.

But it was born and raised West Philadelphian Brian Bazemore’s work that perhaps best summarized the exuberance, delicate hope, and community pride that was palpable in all the works Friday night and in the crowd itself - his approximately 10 ft by 4 ft wooden “testimonial” board made with plywood and spray paint bore the inscription “Use each setback, disappointment and success as a cue to push forward/ahead with more determination than before.”

The show is running until January 27.