curated exhibition

Encounters

The artwork of Katrina Bello, Kat Larson, Gina Osterloh, and Kenneth Tam in Encounters calls into question the location of art within a precarious present.

 

Here are some further questions that we hope the show inspires: How do we encounter land, nature, and sovereignty? How do we encounter identities in flux, intersectional lives, precarious identities? How do we encounter barriers, emotional and material?  And how can we work from these encounters as entry points into thinking about what’s possible for us as we move forward during these times?

 

Walls between the Mexico and the United States; travel and immigration bans from predominately Muslim countries; and the continued deportation of undocumented individuals, to name but a few of the oppressive structural constraints inaugurated with Donald Trump’s presidency, give new meanings, for example, to Gina Osterloh’s delicate, silent dance with her shadow on a wall in Press and Outline (2014) or to the male strangers that Kenneth Tam encounters (and who encounter each other) for the first time in his video installation Breakfast in Bed (2016). The language of geography and environment in today’s political rhetoric around immigration, citizenship, and sovereignty informs the way we view Kat Larson’s series The Ghost from Vega (2016), which she shot on the Oceti Sakowin Camp at the Standing Rock Reservation. And Katrina Bello’s Rocky Rocks and Grassy Grass (2016) along with her other paintings take on added meanings, as we think about the significance of landscapes and spaces (psychic and material) in migrant travel and (re)settlement narratives.

 

This curated exhibition, we hope, captures how art encounters the precarious realities set forth by the current political and social moment and the possibilities of new interpretive strategies by its viewers.  While none of the works by Katrina Bello, Kat Larson, Gina Osterloh, and Kenneth Tam were created after the inauguration of Donald Trump, the artists’ representations take on layered meanings in this new political climate.  What rises up from the works as we encounter them during these times?

 

Curated by Jan Christian Bernabe

 

Curatorial Assistant: Mads Le

 

Contributors: Katrina Bello, Kat Larson, Gina Osterloh, and Kenneth Tam.

 

Contributors’ works are published in staggered waves from early March to early April 2017, after which the whole exhibition are archived permanently on CA+T’s website.

 

Special thanks to the Andy Warhol Foundation and the California Institute of Contemporary Arts for fiscal support.

 

Winter/Spring 2017

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Katrina Bello

2013 Acrylic on panel 48” x 38” Courtesy of Katrina Bello

contributor

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Katrina Bello

b. 1973
image description
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Katrina Bello is an artist whose paintings and drawings are about a search for analogies between the natural world and the human condition. Rocks, trees, grasses and puddles are some of the imagery that are predominant in her works. She started drawing and painting at the age of seven in her hometown of Davao City, where she was born and raised, and at age eleven started making her own charcoal medium from coconut shells and driftwood found on the black sand beach near her home. Her first drawing surfaces were rough uneven concrete perimeter walls that mark, bound and secure property lines—a residential standard in her hometown and many other cities in the Philippines. Lately she has been working with video and installation to animate this imagery and to bring into focus nature’s otherness and sameness with the human world. Her work has been exhibited in the Philippines and the United States, and she works in Quezon City, Philippines, in Las Vegas, Nevada, and in Newark and Montclair in New Jersey. Bello recently founded North Willow, where she is director and collaborator. It is an artist-run attic space in Montclair, New Jersey, and it is founded on the idea of skill-sharing between visual artists to make a happening.

My drawings, painting, installation, and videos of landscapes and natural phenomena are based on memories and close observations of things seen in my hikes in forests, beaches, deserts, salt marshes, and wildlife refuges. Weeds, fallen or dying trees, tree bark, dried leaves, swamp plants, rocks, mushrooms and spider webs, and other common things found in these natural environments become the imagery that find their way to my work. I’m interested in the idea that the most ordinary things carry extraordinary potential when translated into still and moving images, and how even the most minute and lightest forms of representing them can carry the weight of the whole thing being represented. All in all, I see the work as visual analogies of our relationship with the natural world, with references to topics about the human condition such as growth, decay, chaos and rebirth.

location

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  • Born: Davao City, Mindanao, Philippines
  • Based: Montclair, NJ, USA
  • Also Based in: Davao City, Mindanao, Philippines

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Hunks

Kenneth Tam

2010 Concrete, Abercrombie & Fitch paper shopping bags 11" × 38" × 38" Courtesy of the artist

contributor

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Kenneth Tam

b. 1982

Kenneth Tam is an artist who uses sculpture and video to explore his interests, which include Abercrombie and Fitch, public restrooms, and the films of Tsai Ming-Liang. He recently had a solo show at Night Gallery in 2013, and he was a recipient of an Art Matters Grant the same year.

location

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  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

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Breakfast in Bed

Kenneth Tam

2016 HD video, color, sound, 32 minutes Installation view Courtesy of the artist

contributor

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Kenneth Tam

b. 1982

Kenneth Tam is an artist who uses sculpture and video to explore his interests, which include Abercrombie and Fitch, public restrooms, and the films of Tsai Ming-Liang. He recently had a solo show at Night Gallery in 2013, and he was a recipient of an Art Matters Grant the same year.

location

X
  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

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Breakfast in Bed

Kenneth Tam

2016 HD video, color, sound, 32 minutes Installation view Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Kenneth Tam

b. 1982

Kenneth Tam is an artist who uses sculpture and video to explore his interests, which include Abercrombie and Fitch, public restrooms, and the films of Tsai Ming-Liang. He recently had a solo show at Night Gallery in 2013, and he was a recipient of an Art Matters Grant the same year.

location

X
  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

comments

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Breakfast in Bed

Kenneth Tam

2016 HD video, color, sound, 32 minutes Installation view Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Kenneth Tam

b. 1982

Kenneth Tam is an artist who uses sculpture and video to explore his interests, which include Abercrombie and Fitch, public restrooms, and the films of Tsai Ming-Liang. He recently had a solo show at Night Gallery in 2013, and he was a recipient of an Art Matters Grant the same year.

location

X
  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

comments

X

Breakfast in Bed

Kenneth Tam

2016 HD video, color, sound, 32 minutes Installation view Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Kenneth Tam

b. 1982

Kenneth Tam is an artist who uses sculpture and video to explore his interests, which include Abercrombie and Fitch, public restrooms, and the films of Tsai Ming-Liang. He recently had a solo show at Night Gallery in 2013, and he was a recipient of an Art Matters Grant the same year.

location

X
  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

comments

X