to find home: Doron Langberg, Sarah Muehlbauer, Beverly Semmes, and Ryan Syrell
Curated by Zach Wampler
September 6 - October 7, 2018
Happy only to find home, a place / Where no tax is levied for being there.
Excerpt from the poem “1929” by W.H. Auden
happylucky no.1 is pleased to present to find home, a group exhibition of works by Doron Langberg, Sarah Muehlbauer, Beverly Semmes, and Ryan Syrell.
Originally, this exhibition began with a question: what constitutes a home? These four artists offer distinct and varying answers.
In the case of Langberg, home is defined by its occupants. We see the intimacies between family and friends in familiar moments: tousled in bedsheets, laying on a sofa, seated at the kitchen table. Relationships and their dynamics form the basis of a home.
While Langberg presents a world of unvarnished intimacy, Sarah Muehlbauer provides an opaque counterpoint to Langberg. Muehlbauer’s photographs show residences devoid of activity. Images of fences, roofs, patios, houses, and garages offer barriers to the private worlds of their occupants and owners. Home is not for another to witness, it is yours and yours alone in these photographs. Home is a mystery to everyone but the inhabitant.
Ryan Syrell and Beverly Semmes do not deal with matters of privacy or intimacy, but are instead focused on the objects and accumulations that compose a home. Syrell’s paintings are bright and energetic with layers of color. The mundane scenes of furniture, computers, vases of flowers, books, and bowls of food are transformed with exuberance. Here, they are brought forward with the composition and color of a modernist sensibility. Simple scenes of domestic life are given a sense of importance.
With importance and preciousness in mind, the sculptures of Beverly Semmes dovetail elegantly with Syrell’s paintings. The three works on display by Semmes are all replicas of a very recognizable object: the teacup. All three iterations have the visible marks of their maker’s hand. They also sit atop fur pelts, which recall Meret Oppenheim’s famous Object. This combination of materials creates a series of contradictions, which speaks to the history and roles of gender. Objects in the home, and their surrounding environment, are made significant because of the power and tension we place in them on a daily basis.
Jorge Wellesley: The Power of Words and the Words of Power
May 16 - June 17, 2018
happylucky no.1 is proud to present an exhibition by Jorge Wellesley titled The Power of Words and the Words of Power. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition in New York. Jorge Wellesley works in a variety of mediums, and this exhibition offers a selection of paintings, drawings, and sculptures. This range shows less interest in medium specificity, and more conceptual, political, and philosophical thought.
Born and raised in Cuba, Wellesley has long been exposed to both the revolutionary expectations and the fundamental realities of his country. Language and text is a major presence throughout the artist’s work since it is a vehicle for propaganda, advertising, and art. Wellesley often manipulates language to his own advantage to undermine and question the text and imagery that we absorb at a constant and overwhelming rate. Whether it is capitalist or autocratic, language is omnipresent and meant to be consumed. However, mock-advertising lights in the exhibition, like the aggressively bold ZEN or a large piece that blinks between history and story, wittily illustrate that any dependability to be had in language is also a fallacy.
The recurring image of billboards, along with neon signs, streetlights, and shipping containers also heavily populate Wellesley’s work. Both corporate and governmental forces use these objects or forms of structure as launchpads for agendas. The ghostly blankness or odd, poetic statements found on the different iterations of the sculptural or painted billboards hint at something more surreal. These objects are finally liberated of their purpose and of their human impositions. The pale silhouettes lack the confines of our languages and our indifference to its subjectivity and truthfulness. The statements elegantly subvert and question the dissonance between honesty and language.
Jorge Wellesley (b. 1979) is originally from Havana, Cuba. He also received three degrees in Cuba from institutions such as the Fine Arts Academy, San Alejandro and Instituto Superior de Arte. Wellesley has exhibited locally and internationally at venues such as the Ludwig Forum für Internationale Kunst, Aachen, Germany; Bildmuseet, Umea, Västerbotten, Sweden; Belkin Gallery, Vancouver, Canada; The Bronx Museum of the Arts, NY; The Queens Museum, NY; The Havana Biennial, Havana, Cuba, and the National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana, Cuba. In addition to his various solo and group exhibitions, Wellesley has participated in esteemed residencies, including the 2017 RU Artist in Residency in Brooklyn, NY and a 2015 fellowship residency at the Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT. His work can also be found in the collections of the National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana, Cuba; The Rubin Foundation, New York City, NY; and various private collections in Europe, Latin America, and the United States. The artist currently lives and works in the New York City area.
Hans Accola : early logos jigs
April 4 - May 6, 2018
happylucky no.1 is proud to present Early Logos Jigs, an exhibition of sculptures by Hans Accola. This is Accola’s first time exhibiting artwork with the gallery.
The exhibition is focused primarily on a body of work that dates from 2000 to 2003, which the artist refers to as “drawings in wood.” Although Accola considers this body of work important as the basis for work he has been making in more recent years, many of these sculptures have never been on view to the public.
The interactions between the planes and forms that make up these “Logos Jigs” are spontaneous and ambiguous. The works evoke multiple compositions and narratives, ranging from the scrap of a woodshop to the modernist lineage of sculpture. Accola himself views these works as non-specific objects that seem to be doing something, but their formal intent isn’t immediately apparent. They are sculptural improvisations.
In addition to the “Logos Jigs,” Accola is also presenting a new work inspired by the gallery itself. The piece is a functional bench, and will span the narrow space at almost sixty feet long. Along with emphasizing the gallery’s physical dimensions, Accola also has an interest in the ethos of happylucky no.1. The artist sees the gallery as a Kunsthalle since it is a free public venue not just for art, but for music and performance. The gallery’s experimental music program parallels the unpredictable qualities in the sculptures, and the bench is a natural extension of these similarities. A bench is an object that is ever-changing due to its participatory, communal nature. Accola’s works in Early Logos Jigs harmonizes with the mission of the gallery as a place for extemporaneous dialogue and shared experience.
Hans Accola (b. 1967) is an artist and designer who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. His work has been shown at venues such as Gavin Brown’s enterprise, Derek Eller Gallery, Genovese/Sullivan Gallery, Fredereike Taylor Gallery, and David Zwirner. Accola has also participated in museum exhibitions at the Suermondt Ludwig Museum in Aachen, Germany, and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, MN.
Accola received his degree in 1990 from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. He also has been awarded with two grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, and fellowships from the Bush Foundation and Jerome Foundation.
Haptics : Barbara Bertieri, Frid Branham, Kimberly Carmody, Lisa Cooperman, Joetta Maue and PD Packard
March 1 - March 25, 2018
“Active touching, which is called haptics, involves the interpretation of complex spatiotemporal patterns of stimuli that are likely to activate many classes ofmechanoreceptors. Haptics also requires dynamic interactions betweenmotor andsensory signals, which presumably induce sensory responses in central neurons that differ from the responses of the same cells during passive stimulation of the skin.”
- Neuroscience, 2nd Edition*
happylucky no. 1 is proud to present Haptics, a group exhibition that explores the sensory relationship between the realms of art and craft. Featuring works by Barbara Bertieri, Frid Branham, Kimberly Carmody, Lisa Cooperman, Joetta Maue, and PD Packard, this exhibition provides a cross-section of contemporary artists who use materials associated with craft: clay, thread, dyes and inks, or precious stones. Materials like these require a viewer to deploy sensuality to engage with the work.
The biomorphic kidney forms of Kimberly Carmody- which come covered with holes, dots, and glaze -invite the viewer to directly touch and engage with their distinct noises, textures, and colors. Without the touch of the human hand, these objects cannot be experienced. PD Packard’s channeling of the ancient practice of dying Japanese kozo paper seem timeless with geometric and natural motifs. Although delicate in their layered patterns and compositions, the papers are durable and can be subjected to endless printed layers of colors.
On the other hand, Lisa Cooperman and Frid Branham use soft, layered textiles to create compositions that straddle sculpture and ephemera. In a similar vein, Joetta Maue uses textiles in her own work. Maue’s use of embroidery evokes transient nostalgia, comfort, sexuality, and a history of handcraft. However, Barbara Bertieri comes closest to engaging with the viewer on a bodily level since she primarily creates functional jewelry. Her practice uses a myriad of techniques and materials that place her work uniquely between art and craft. Pendants that are constructed like a gold-leafed Medieval altarpieces use the living body as a place of adornment.
The biggest link between all of these artists is the importance they place on materials, along with their processing and transformation through handcraft. This collapse of separate narratives regarding art and craft has spanned the course of the twentieth century. Artists and designers like Sonia Delaunary-Terk, Sheila Hicks, Ruth Asawa, and Lucie Rie pioneered a nonhierarchical approach to creative endeavors. Academically, the Arts & Craft movement and the Bauhaus also helped reimagine the framework in which we value a painting, a chair, a sock, a teapot, a sculpture, or a bracelet. Playfulness and irreverence, too, permeates the work of these six artists. Rather than serious and delineated artwork, the process of simply “making” is a major source of joy, sensuality, and aspiration in its own right
Maybe Tomorrow: Scott Dolan, Jason Duverney-Gaspar, and Elisa Soliven
November 30 - December 22, 2017
Maybe Tomorrow brings together the work of three artists whose work presents moments of pause and reexamination.
Each in their own way, Scott Dolan, Jason Duverney-Gaspar, and Elisa Soliven situate their work at an isolated moment within a much larger allegory that encourage us to consider the power of creating our own myths, of examining our relationships, and observing the world with a keen eye alert to the possibility of the a multitude of things unfolding.
Dolan’s quiet and wry gouache drawings, Duverney-Gaspar’s daily drawing practice of searching and struggling, and Soliven’s solid yet precarious groupings of individuals reform and recast the everyday where the potential of our daily narratives can be pathetic, poignant,obsessive, powerful, or violent.
All of the work in the exhibition presents a cautious and patient optimism that the things we fight for and endure could shift, if not today then maybe tomorrow...
curated by Mildred Beltré and DJ Hellerman
Abraham Brody - ONGON:
November 14 –November 22, 2017
The souls of one's ancestors and spirits which inhabit sacred places in nature, such as mountains, trees, rivers, lakes.
A video installation and solo performance that aims to bring the power of ancient Buryatan shamanism into an urban space. Brody and Guz’s videos show various shamanic rituals like animal sacrifice, sacred fires, and trance-inducing music. The show was created in collaboration with director and choreographer Stephano Regueros Savvides.
Mary Louise Geering | Denim & Diamonds
October 19 - November 12, 2017
A multi-faceted artist, Geering has spent more than 30 years as as a sculptor, a practice that informs her prints and paintings, as well as more than 30 years as a textile designer in New York City’s garment district, a day job in which she used antiquated methods as well as contemporary computer software. The paintings and drawings on view in Denim and Diamonds are informed by these varied artistic practices.
Geering’s large-scale paintings of objects such as a diamond-encrusted belt buckle play with scale and dimension. After photographing the belt-buckle, for instance, she enlarges the image on the computer and then hand-paints it, adding color and capturing the impression of light reflecting off of the geometric, multi-planed surfaces.
Her gouache-on-paper paintings of patterns may be the most directly related to her textile design, but while they were rendered on the computer, they are all meticulously hand-painted. Her “denim drawings,” on the other hand, are tied to her sculptural practice in surprising ways: the forms in the drawings are derived from the shadows cast by her sculptures, which she then paints with gouache, creating fine lines that replicate the look of twill denim.
Geering, who attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the Massachusetts College of Art, as well as the Fashion Institute of Technology, and who received a Gottlieb Foundation Grant in 2015, then adds whimsical elements, like an eight-ball or a string of flowers, or letters spelling CRYBABY. Her gouache paintings of knitted butterflies similarly play with the layers of artistic interpretation of a natural form: a butterfly knitted out of yarn, intended as a decorative doo-dad, photographed and enlarged and then carefully hand-painted by Geering to capture the tactility of the loops and knots in the yarn. Her drawings and paintings reflect the biomorphic shapes of her sculptures as well as the commercial influences of decades in design work, combining precision with a practice rooted in natural forms.
Traces of the Material World: Jessica Backhaus, Capucine Bourcart, and Paola Ferrario
Traces of the Material World featuring artists Paola Ferrario, Capucine Bourcart, and Jessica Backhaus, each in her own way, focuses on vernacular imagery – snippets of graffiti, the patched-up hood of a car, a length of string twisted in the sun – transforming the most pedestrian of things into compact visual poems. Their observational images reframe and recontextualize small, ordinary scenes, drawing our attention to the material world.
curated by Jean Dykstra
Asuncion Lozano & Pedro Osakar| Citizens: Identity and Difference
CITIZENS: Identity and Difference, is a collaborative exhibition of work by Spanish artists Asuncion Lozano and Pedro Osakar. The exhibition includes work created expressly for this exhibition exploring the concept of identity and its social and political implications. No longer stable or predetermined, identity today is dependent on constant changes in our globalized contemporary world and subjected to the caprices of various governments. This exhibition considers the cultural conventions of gender and race, taking into account various strategies of image representation. Lozano and Osakar are also interested in analyzing our vulnerability when we expose ourselves publicly.
Matjaž Tančič | 3DPRK
Portraits from North Korea is a collaboration between Slovenian photographer Matjaž Tančič and Beijing based North Korean art specialists Koryo Studio. The exhibition explores the nature of governmental control versus the everyday lives of North Koreans. The photographs focus on the core of North Korean society – its people, and attempt to occupy a space free from sensationalism or idealization, as seen in the expression of a local shop worker to a portrait of a young woman wearing a bathing suit at one of the nation’s new leisure centers. While the portraits are oddly stoic, Tančič gives us a lot of detail in the frame and by looking through the viewer, we must spend time looking at the photograph in order to find a connection.
Florencia Walfisch | Time as Space
Time is a place. Fabric is a space I inhabit, a field of forces. I question the shape; something more than a fold, something less: love, pain. A drawing of bones sounds until I can hear. Each thread brings its own pulse. Lines open directions, color advances: magenta, blue, unknown. Tensing or releasing according to the compression of what’s to come. Going back is building a map. A silence in the plane can hold the landscape. Someone keeps the gestures which are yet to come. I am the first incision, the last one. Now it is a terrain. Time means we are moving in a still space.
curated by Molly Merson
Paz Perlman | Before Thought
Perlman scavenges discarded objects, which she often combines with more traditional materials like metal, wood, textiles, and paper. Her sculptures, installations and bricolage often resemble ruin-like grids which represent the continuous process of destruction and rebirth, insights stemming from her 20-year study and practice of Zen Buddhism and Taoist philosophy. In her artistic practice, Perlman relies on experimentation and intuition, treating her studio as a playground. By putting an emphasis on the process rather than the end result, her works are more of a question mark than a statement and allow the viewer to be part of her questing
One Clover and a Bee. And Revery
November 11 - December 24, 2016
An all-women group show that takes its title from the Emily Dickinson poem, “To Make a Prairie,” and the artists included all draw on that ineffable element – creativity, inspiration, vision, or as Dickinson calls it, revery -- to create artworks in a range of media. The show includes videos ranging from the meditative to the humorous; photo-based work, both figurative and abstract; sculpture and installation work; drawings and collage.
co-curated by Katerina Marcelja
Jörg Söchting | We Refugees
October 6 - October 30, 2016
The paintings and textiles in Joerg Soechting’s series We Refugees began when he was working on a piece about labor that grew into a piece on refugees, two urgent and interconnected ideas that form the basis of this work.
Anderson Zaca | Block Party - The Contact Sheets, celebrating New Yorkers across race and class, sharing regional pride from different neighborhoods
July 1 - July 10, 2016
Nothing says summer in New York like a block party. The streets are closed, the hot dogs are cooking, the bouncy castles are full of airborne kids, the beer is flowing, and so are the fire hydrants. To welcome summer, happylucky no.1 showed photographs from Anderson Zaca’s series Block Party: NYC Soul of Summer.
Carol Keller | OSTENSIBLY STABLE
June 2 - June 29, 2016
Interested in the overtly physical acts of interruption, disruption, and radical revision that collage can offer, Carol Keller uses it to both build structure and intentionally undermine that structure. The collage process can constantly redirect a work, generating restless energy into an ostensibly stable form. Keller’s goal is to arrive at compositions that contradict themselves and refuse to settle too easily into secure relationships, but rather suggest latent or shifting possibilities.
Rey Parlá | Borderless
May 6 - May 28, 2016
Influenced by painting, photography, and experimental filmmaking, Parlá uses photographic materials to create what he calls “Scratch | Graphs.” The photographic medium itself is the subject of his work, which combines kinetic painting with photographic techniques. Influenced by such avant-garde artists as Georges Méliès, Man Ray, Len Lye, Stan Brakhage, Tony Conrad, and László Moholy-Nagy, Parlá incorporates various technologies and unconventional materials into his work, remixing concepts from the art historical canons of photography and film.
April 14 - May 1, 2016
The aesthetics of comics – the energy, the attitude, the bold colors and dynamic narratives, not to mention the drawing, in which evidence of the artist’s idiosyncratic and distinctive hand is clear -- have long been appreciated by artists who embrace those elements in their own work. The seven artists in this exhibition -- Reilly Brown, Simon Fraser, Tetsuo Hasegawa, David Klein, Ellen Lindner, Tiggy Ticehurst, and Demetrios Zissiadis – represent the dizzying visual and narrative possibilities of the form and as well as its wide-ranging aesthetic influences.
March 4 - April 3, 2016
Wild Seeds will included artists whose work critically engages such topics as difference, the environment, corporatocracy, gentrification, immigration, debt slavery and what the future may hold if, in Butler’s words, we humans ‘don’t stop misbehaving’. These artists examine human conditions as filtered through the lens of Butler’s oeuvre, using her writing as a diving board into a pool of possibilities for imagining futures in the wake of present socio-political and cultural conditions of oppression and enslavement within the age of the anthropocene.
curated by Temporary Agency
Katerina Marcelja | Sediments of Erratic Impulse
January 6 - February 15, 2016
Marcelja’s organic, primitive forms are at once deeply familiar and viscerally unnerving, suggesting archetypal narratives about potential and transfiguration. Her tactile organisms – slugs or sea creatures, some tentacled, some not -- seem to be in a state of becoming, on the verge of metamorphosis.
Matthew Arnold | Topography is Fate
November 11 - December 15, 2015
Large-scale photographs of World War II battlefields in North Africa by New York City-based artist Matthew Arnold.