Debra Baxter | Ghost Heart

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Debra Baxter is back in Seattle.

Her new solo show, Ghost Heart, opens tomorrow at Roq La Rue.

The show is already garnering press, with recent write-ups by Hi-Fructose and Juxtapoz.

Inspired by a medical process created by Dr. Doris Taylor, where a heart’s blood cells are removed until only a “protein scaffold” remains. The now colorless, lifeless heart is then injected with millions of bone-marrow stem cells, until the heart begins beating once again.

This phenomenon caused Debra to consider the boundary between life and death, and how the line is more amorphous that previously believed.

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Roq La Rue explains, “Simultaneously, she became intrigued with the popular Victorian era iconography of disembodied hands that existed predominantly in jewelry, in glass and on gravestones. The attributed meaning of that symbolism is depicting the spirit of a passed person guiding a dying loved one into the next life.”

Ghost Heart debuts alongside Rebecca Chaperone, a painter that also incorporates crystals into her body of work. As the gallery says, “Crystals are an integral aspect to both the hard earth science of geology, as well as a key component in various mystical studies, with an array of attributes and powers attributed to them. Occasionally dismissed as just fluffy ‘woo woo’ mystical mumbo jumbo coming from the New Age movement, crystals actually have been revered by various cultures throughout time both for their perceived occult qualities as well as their sheer beauty.

Ghost Heart opens April 11th at Roq La Rue in Seattle, Washington and runs through May 5th.

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Ebb & Flow | Matthew Szösz

ouroboros matthew szöszOuroboros, glass, 14 x 24 x 2 4in

 

Most artists try to avoid failure. For Matthew Szösz, it’s a welcome occurrence. He estimates about 75 to 80 percent of his artworks break, but working through the process is the real reward for the glass artist.

The Seattle artist is all about experimentation. His oeuvre features unfathomable glass sculptures: woven structures and inflated forms that seem to defy the laws of physics.

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Floret, glass, 16 x 14 x 16 in

 

Matthew is fascinated by the properties of glass as it shifts from solid to liquid and back again. Successfully producing the conditions to reshape the medium is a process that demands scientific precision and bold experimentation.”

It’s a lot more like working with a partner than working with a material,” says Szösz of working with glass. “You’re not just imposing your idea on something else. There’s a response from the material that’s not necessarily predictable.”

 

matthew szöszMatthew Szösz photographed by Corning Museum of Glass.

His innovation earned him a spot in the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery exhibition 40 under 40: Craft Futures in 2012. His solo show, Minimal Tension, spanned form & concept’s ground floor last spring.

“If I wasn’t being surprised, I would get bored and stop playing around with it,” says Matthew. “That surprise, that thing where you create something that’s independent of you a little bit, where it’s as much a product of the material and circumstance that you set up as well as your own vision, that’s the thing that’s kind of exciting for me.”

matthew szösz untitled (inflatable) no. 81p

 

To learn more about Matthew, please contact us at 505-216-1256. Click here to view all works by Matthew Szösz in our collection.

Curious Creations: Susan Aaron-Taylor

susan aaron taylor, fetch
Fetch, handmade felt, shell, beads, wood, 15 x 13 x 6 in

Fantastical creatures appear to Susan Aaron-Taylor in her dreams. In the waking hours, the Michigan artist brings them to life, stitching together a hide of handmade felt and an array of natural materials.

 

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Pug, handmade felt, agate, wood, 9 x 11 x 15 in

 

Unified by Jungian philosophy,  Aaron-Taylor’s curious creations metamorphose animal forms with archetypal meaning.

The mixed-media sculptures simultaneously evoke universal and deeply personal themes, which Aaron-Taylor states, “chronicles the retrieval of these broken pieces of the Soul.”

 

susan aaron taylor, susan aaron taylor cat
Cat, handmade felt, porcupine quills, wood, 7 x 14 x 14 in

 

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Tiger Teapot, felt, wood, geodes, porcupine quills, 12 x 19 x 10 in

Press Roundup: Nika Feldman | Spirits in the Material World

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Nika Feldman’s solo exhibition Spirits in the Material World opens Saturday, January 25 from 5-7 pm, coinciding with our sister gallery Zane Bennett Contemporary Art’s Stitched Ink. Both exhibitions deal with textiles, but with largely different implications.

“A culture’s clothing has its own language,” begins Megan Bennett of Albuquerque Journal’s write-up of Nika. “What that language is, or how cultural identities and values are reflected in garments, is what drives Nika Feldman’s work.” Bennett interviewed Feldman early this winter, excerpted here:

The pieces are intentionally made to be “garment-like” rather than actual clothing items, said Feldman, with the exception of an XXL black T-shirt she didn’t want to cut apart, and instead decorated with tabs and fringe tassles made from other shirts.

“When it’s artwork, people have to investigative, people have to go deeper into those narratives,” she said. “If it’s a wearable garment, it doesn’t go any farther than that. People see it as fashion, they want to know if it comes in their size, they want to know how much it is.”

 

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Emily Van Cleve covered Spirits in the Material World in a feature on the Santa Fe Arts Journal. Here’s an excerpt:

 

“All around the world, people wear t-shirts,” says Feldman, a Santa Fe artist who moved to town from Nova Scotia at the end of 2017. “T-shirts were originally an undergarment. But now, through their logos, they inform others about the specific groups, companies, rock bands and organizations we like.” Feldman liked the idea of putting pull-tabs in her work for the same reasons she was drawn to t-shirts. They’re readily available. There’s an abundant supply of them. They’re also an integral part of Western culture.

 

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The Santa Fean also covered Spirits in the Material World for their Holiday Issue. Here’s an excerpt:

Nika Feldman describes herself as a textile artist, rag picker, and costume stenographer, and her job history includes stints in fashion design, social work, and sorting through clothing in a thrift store. Feldman weaves these disparate threads into a whole in the eight pieces displayed in Spirits in the Material World.

 

Spirits in the Material World opens January 25 and runs through March 23. Nika Feldman will conduct an Artist Talk on January 26 at 2 pm.

Artist Spotlight: Heidi Brandow

 

 

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Heidi Brandow, Margins, mixed media on panel, 18 x 24 in

 

“I knew from an early age that our native identity is so rich that we shouldn’t just hold it to a specific ceremony or spiritual practice,” Heidi Brandow said during a studio visit in 2016. “In my eyes, art is a tool that helps mark history, time, place and memory. Who’s to say pop culture are not equally as important as star sticks?”

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Brandow’s works often feature whimsical monsters and characters against vividly colorful backdrops and paper collages she collects on her international travels.

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Brandow was recently awarded the third Ucross Fellowship for Native American Visual Artists.

“As an artist with an active arts practice, a full-time commitment to the Institute of American Indian Arts, and a family,” says Heidi. “I am grateful for Ucross’ support in granting me the time, space, and resources to enhance my craft and create in such a beautiful setting.”

 

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Low Tide, mixed media painting, 5.5 x 5.5 x 1.5 in

 

To learn more about Heidi, please inquire or call us at (505) 216-1256.

Click here to view more works by Heidi Brandow in our collection.

Scroll below to read excerpts from our 2016 studio interview.

 

Do the monsters have names, or story lines? 

For me personally, they don’t have names, and there’s no story behind any of them. I try not to put too much of my own self into them. I don’t want to over personalize it. These are a nice outlet for me to create work that is lighthearted, that is easy. It’s very fluid. I feel like when people see it, they get it immediately. Whether you like it or you don’t like it, it’s a visceral thing. It’s not too theory-based.

I want my work to reach everyone. I don’t come from a community or people that are heavy academicians. In fact, I would argue that the art world has largely blocked out people of color from participating in art to a large extent.

On the other hand, I think a lot of the work I do is a little heavier. This is a nice outlet, where I can just make work that is more lighthearted and fun.

 

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Floating, mixed-media on panel, 5 x 5 x 3 in

 

How does your own cultural heritage figure into your work? 

I never entered the art scene on the basis of promoting myself or my work as Native art. Not because I was shying away from it, but because my idea of Native art was a lot of very cultural referenced work, such as very specific tribal motifs and designs. The stuff that I was doing wasn’t like that. I never felt weird about it, because I always felt like my Native identity is already in this work, whether or not there’s symbols or direct references to cultural place. The simple fact that I’m Native and that this is the work that I’m making, there’s no way of denying my heritage and my experience, or saying that it’s not implicitly in the work. I don’t believe it has to have direct references to culture and place.

Culturally Native people are so diverse and our experience is so diverse. If you look at someone like myself, being Native Hawaiian and Navajo or Dinè, they’re two entirely different cultures. They’re both Native, but it’s ocean and desert people. That’s only the first difference, right? Of course we have a lot of similar cultural values, but it’s like night and day in a lot of ways.

 

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Fences (diptych) mixed media painting, 5.5 x 11 x 1.5 in

 

Do the monsters have names, or story lines? 

For me personally, they don’t have names, and there’s no story behind any of them. I try not to put too much of my own self into them. I don’t want to over personalize it. These are a nice outlet for me to create work that is lighthearted, that is easy. It’s very fluid. I feel like when people see it, they get it immediately. Whether you like it or you don’t like it, it’s a visceral thing. It’s not too theory-based.

I want my work to reach everyone. I don’t come from a community or people that are heavy academicians. In fact, I would argue that the art world has largely blocked out people of color from participating in art to a large extent.

On the other hand, I think a lot of the work I do is a little heavier. This is a nice outlet, where I can just make work that is more lighthearted and fun.

 

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Altin, mixed-media, 5.5 x 12 x 1 in

Debra Baxter | Elegant Experimentation

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Debra Baxter photographed in her studio by Suzanna Finley.

 

“Even though I am interested in very traditional materials within the history of sculpture, I don’t want to be boring and stuck in that history.” Debra Baxter said in an interview with One 2 Three’s Practice Practice. “I want to mix them in a way that no one has.”

 

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Breastplate (Reveal), bronze and quartz crystal, 18 x 11 x 3 in

 

As a master of material inversion, Debra transforms dense materials into light and flowing sculptures, or fragile mediums into resilient structures.

 

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The end result is elegant – but dangerous – as seen in her Lace Throwing Star, which gives the delicate textile an edge.

 

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Unapologetic Glory 

Debra received her MFA in Sculpture from Bard College. Her wearable sculpture Devil Horns Crystal Brass Knuckles (Lefty) is featured in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery. She debuted her solo show, Tooth & Nail, at form & concept this past spring.

Click here to view more of Debra’s work in our collection. To view pieces from Debra’s jewelry line, db/cb, click here.

To learn more about Debra, please inquire or contact us at 505-216-1256

Tania Larsson: Traditional Meets Contemporary

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Tania Larsson starts with the land. Her materials are harvested from nature, then combined with silver, gold, and precious stones. The combination of traditional craft with a contemporary education results in striking, intricate adornment.

“My heritage is an integral part of who I am and my work,” said Tania Larsson in an interview with UNUM Magazine. “I wanted to present myself as a Gwich’in woman and needed cultural indicators that could be worn anywhere.”

Larsson maintains a studio in Yellowknife, but she hand delivers her jewelry works to our gallery shop. View some of our favorites below.

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Long Muskox Horn and Sterling Silver Earrings

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Long Bison Horn and Sterling Silver Earrings

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Etched Caribou Horn and Sterling Silver Necklace

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Bison Horn and Sterling Silver Necklace

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Triangle Muskox Horn and Sterling Silver Earrings

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Porcupine Claw and Sterling Silver Earrings

 

 

This Friday: Hand/Eye

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Whether they’re gelatin silver prints or daguerreotypes, there’s one thing that most photographs have in common: they’re flat. For a new group exhibition at form & concept, eleven artists from across the United States shatter this convention by applying craft media to photography—and vice versa. Hand/Eye presents images with the texture and volume of sculptures, vaulting a medium that’s often trapped behind glass into the viewer’s sphere. The artworks in the show incorporate a wide array of materials, including fiber, cast glass, micaceous clay and human hair. Call it super-alternative process photography.

Above: David Samuel Stern, Nouri, photographic prints on translucent vellum physically cut and woven together.

 

 

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Cathryn Amidei
Gut Feeling
Fiber
25 x 44 in.

 

 

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Jodi Colella
Sampled Lives series
embroidered found postcards
4 x 6 in. each

 

 

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Elizabeth Claffey
Matrilinear #9
archival pigment print
24 x 18 in.

 

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Jacquelyn Royal
Detroit 3
needlepoint, thread on canvas
11 x 16 in.

 

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Emily Margarit Mason
Yoga Mat and Glass
photograph
36 x 24 in

 

Preview the show on our website.
RSVP on Facebook.

 

Introductions

kylee aragon, form & concept, form and concept gallery

We’re excited to announce that Kylee Aragon is our new Administrative Coordinator! Kylee was born and raised in Albuquerque, NM. She received a BFA in Art History from the University of New Mexico. Kylee began her gallery experience at Tamarind Institute, where she developed a deep love for works on paper. While Kylee is not a printmaker she is a self-proclaimed print nerd who enjoys speaking in great detail about process, paper, and the print market. She is excited to bring her passion for art to form & concept.

 

This Saturday: Matthew Mullins Artist Talk

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This Saturday, Matthew Mullins hosts an artist talk for his solo exhibition The Sun In Our Bones. When Mullins began working on the monumental show last year, he was shooting for the stars. “I thought about this spectrum of very earthy and grounded to the cosmos,” says Mullins. “How do you encompass that staggering span, and pull someone all the way through it?” The exhibition is on view through November 17, 2018. Scroll down to see selections from the exhibition, and click here to browse all of the artwork online.

 

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Matthew Mullins, Source of the Rio Nambe, oil on canvas

 

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Matthew Mullins, Dome, 19th century engraving with gold leaf

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Matthew Mullins, Chama River, archival pigment print

Design Spotlights & Introductions!

Lisa Klakulak

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Lisa Klakulak is an avid traveler, and often draws inspiration from far-flung landscapes to create stunning fiber artworks. In the past, she’s crafted wearables that evoke lava flows and glaciers. This fall, Lisa debuts a series that draws from the vernacular of the human body. The new works reflect the soft textures and hues of hair and skin.

“Attracted by its protective and nurturing qualities, I found wool fiber a relevant material to use in my work that’s related to concepts of human vulnerability and security,” Lisa says. “I attribute the sense of contentment and calm that I feel when I’m working in the studio to the constant touch involved in the process, as well as bringing an idea into fruition. You need that idea, that inspiration.”

 

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Lisa Klakulak, Untitled Bracelet, felt mixed media

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Lisa Klakulak, Tail, merino wool, cotton thread, vintage hot roller pins

Oaxacan Ceramics

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Oaxacan Ceramics, Tall Bartolo Vase, ceramic

Made by hand in Oaxaca, these ceramics are as functional as they are elegant. From spice jars to vases, Oaxacan ceramics adapt to contemporary lifestyles while maintaining Mexican traditions.

Introductions!

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Jordan Eddy is the new Gallery Director of form & concept and Zane Bennett Contemporary Art! Originally from Oregon, Jordan moved to Santa Fe in 2012 and quickly found himself immersed in the gallery community. He performed marketing and public relations work for galleries and museums in every Santa Fe arts district before landing at form & concept as Marketing Director. After two years in that role, he’s excited to take the helm at both galleries. Jordan also writes for a number of arts publications including The MagazineSanta Fe Reporter, and New Mexico Magazine.

 

savannah sakry, form & concept, form and concept, santa fe gallery, form & concept sales manager

Savannah Sakry is our new Sales Manager at form & concept, while our beloved Sales Manager Clara Holiday will continue to spearhead sales for the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art collection! Originally from Evergreen, CO, Savannah moved to New York City where she received a BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts. Relocating to Santa Fe in 2015, she began her experience with fine art sales working for the internationally acclaimed photo bookstore and contemporary photography gallery, photo-eye. While photography is Savannah’s first love she is just as enthusiastic about other mediums, and shares form & concept’s mission to challenge traditional distinctions between art, craft, and design.