Welmont is pleased to announce A Place That is Not Yours, a group exhibition featuring work by Bethani Wells, Agnes Waruguru Njoroge and Olivia Cook on May 19, 2017. The opening reception will be Friday, May 19th from 6-9pm. The event is free and open to the public.
A Place That is Not Yours speaks to the ephemeral quality of place. Through the use of synthetic and organic media, materiality is explored and ethereal spaces are created. Inspired by geographical landscapes specific to each artist, the paintings, wall-hangings, and installation work come together to create a unique place from within, a place that is not yours.
Wells uses large-scale, non-representational painting and extended media to metaphorically reflect humanity and ephemerality by contrasting organic and synthetic materials. In her work, After Suns Shadows, Wells uses synthetic materials such as plastic and mylar as a representation of the corrupted sinful nature that dwells in us. She uses oil pastels and sand to portray our untainted, spiritual nature. Her paintings are like bodies that explore the gamut of this symbiotic relationship within humanity and make up who we are.
Njoroge combines elements from her home environment with found objects to create wall hangings and installation. Strong attachments to the country of her birth and her adopted homes are reflected in the work, this reveals her hybrid cultural identity that is a main theme in this body of work. In the piece Khanga Nzito I (Big Khanga I) she combines materials she grew up around in Kenya such as glass beads and khanga with sheer curtains, embroidery thread and vinyl shelf paper material that she relates to America. Through combining these elements she brings many fragments together. In this way meaning is shifted and interpretation becomes multifaceted.
Cook’s work is informed by the tradition of daxeiyi, an unrestrained freehand style of painting. She creates large installations suspended in space. Cook’s Untitled: Landscape sustains an ethereal impression as it is suspended in space. Her use of ink on fabric produces a range of tonality while engaging with the movement of light.
Through the innovative use of materials, each of the works presented in A Place That is Not Yours explore the ephemeral quality of place. The artists depict the coming together of many landscapes we experience; the map of no particular location. A Place That is Not Yours is the translation of how places transform people and how such places are within us. The exhibition focuses on featuring the diversity of practices across the three artists and highlighting how place is important to each of them in a unique way.