Top Five: August 24, 2023

by Glasstire August 24, 2023

Glasstire counts down the top five art events in Texas.

For last week’s picks, please go here.

A photograph of a man covered in blue paint.

MANVAS: A ritual of transformation

1. MANVAS: A ritual of transformation
landSPACE (Austin)
August 12 – September 12, 2023

From landSPACE:

“The work in Mitch Pengra’s first-ever, solo exhibition includes photographs, collages, and artifacts capturing the experience of fully coating his body with paint. Pengra has enjoyed this ritual of transformation ever since he was a kid, seeing and feeling different selves; at once obscured and illuminated. He has produced more than 10,000 images over the past 4 decades, documenting a lifelong practice that is purely for him and the experience of doing it. ‘It’s about loving myself,’ he says, ‘embracing my body, and enjoying a heightened self-awareness.’”

An installation image of an immersive art installation.

Installation view from Li(sa E.) Harris’ “unlit- sof landin,” 2023; Maria Chávez, “Absorption Sculpture-The Orange Show, #5 & #8,” 2023. May 24–September 16, 2023, Ballroom Marfa. Courtesy of the artists and Ballroom Marfa. Photo: Makenzie G

2. Li(sa E.) Harris: UNLIT: SOF LANDIN
Ballroom Marfa
May 24 – September 16, 2023

From Ballroom Marfa:

“Ballroom Marfa presents unlit: sof landin, a solo exhibition by interdisciplinary artist, musician, and filmmaker Li(sa E.) Harris. Through an intuitive and experimental process, the artist explores sound as a medium for liberation and resistance. The artist creates an immersive dream space with newly commissioned works: a nine-hour composition, a non-linear film, sculpture, and sonic collage. Through this new body of work, Li envisions safe spaces for beings — Black beings in particular — to soften and activate the power of dreams and the unconscious as a means for transcendence, survival, preservation, and joy.”

An installation by JooYoung Choi.

JooYoung Choi, “Love and Wondervsion,” installation in progress at the Moody Center for the Arts, Rice University

3. JooYoung Choi: Love and Wondervision
Moody Center for the Arts at Rice University (Houston)
May 25 – August 26, 2023

From the Moody Center:

“For the summer 2023 exhibition, the Moody Center for the Arts presents an immersive exhibition by Houston-based multimedia artist JooYoung Choi (b. 1982, Seoul, South Korea). Featuring video, sculpture, painting, and a site-specific installation engaging the building’s architecture, Love and Wondervision invites visitors to experience Choi’s original, multidisciplinary world. Drawing from an imaginary universe of characters and narratives inspired by Choi’s childhood memories and personal experiences, her work explores themes of identity, belonging, trauma, and resilience. Through playful forms and colorful images, the artist taps into the power of storytelling and worldbuilding to convey themes of kindness and healing in the face of racism and social division.”

A mixed media work by JooYoung Choi with text that reads "Feeling Finder."

JooYoung Choi “Feeling Finder 5000,” 2022 acrylic and cut paper on canvas, 14 x 11 inches.

JooYoung Choi: Discovering Truth Will Make Me Free
Inman Gallery (Houston)
July 14 – September 1, 2023

From Inman Gallery:

“Astro-futurist world builder JooYoung Choi (b. 1982, Seoul, South Korea) documents the interconnecting narratives of a highly structured, expansive fictional land called the Cosmic Womb through painting, video, soft sculpture, animation, puppetry, music, interactive community projects, and installation art. Choi’s complex and thoughtful interdisciplinary projects merge the autobiographic with the fantastic to form a dynamic, heartfelt, and imaginative aesthetic practice. Guided by this narrative, her work explores themes such as anti-racism, gender inclusivity, transracial adoptee rights, post-traumatic growth, and spirituality rooted in social justice.”

Side by side images of abstract works by Paul Winker and Jan van der Ploeg.

Left: Paul Winker, “Untitled (Cereal Box) (detail),” 2023, acrylic on canvas, 74 x 51 inches. Right: Jan van der Ploeg, “PAINTING No.22-10, Untitled (detail),” 2022, acrylic on canvas, 11.5 x 12.5 inches.

4. Paul Winker & Jan van der Ploeg
Cris Worley Fine Arts (Dallas)
August 26 – September 30, 2023

From Cris Worley Fine Arts:

“Bestowing deep attention onto an object in an activated visual capacity will cast repeat viewings with a transactional yet vivid spell. Everyday commerce and unfeeling nostalgia work their desire lines around the interiors of rooms. Vaguely commercial displays exit makeshift assembly lines built with a particular yet open intent. A common visual cue devised for utility’s ease pushes the lozenge and blip into a framework for experimentation and intuition in the works on canvas of Jan van der Ploeg. Application of color registers and skids across the prescribed format, a candid acknowledgement of the process and accident from one painting into the next.

For this exhibition, Paul Winker devised plans for his paintings by pursuing an almost monastic-like devotion to the unforeseen details of everyday life. The folds of a beloved’s blouse, a security-lined envelope, the detailing of a cereal box, a cartooned comforter. Cropped compositions blown up and rendered with precise, traced templates laid down upon the base ground. Flipping our expectations back and forth between illusory and flat formulations, altogether wily patterns amidst droll color combos. An all- consuming heat of looking, cooling into a condensed register, ready to be received anew yet again.”

A photograph of a Cheyenne ledger drawing.

A Cheyenne ledger drawing on view at the Old Jail Art Center

5. Cheyenne Ledger Drawings: Stories of Warrior Artists
Old Jail Art Center (Albany)
June 10 – August 26, 2023

From the Old Jail Art Center:

“In 1875, following the Red River War, the United States government ordered the arrest of 72 prisoners of war, including Cheyenne, Kiowa, Comanche, Caddo, and Arapaho warriors. Of these, 15 were Cheyenne. Taken from their families, they were chained and loaded onto trains and sent east. Nearly four weeks later, they arrived at Ft. Marion in St. Augustine, Florida, their home for the next three years. While at the fort, government agents attempted to assimilate the imprisoned Cheyenne. Their once long hair was cut short and their clothing was replaced by military uniforms.

For nearly 100 years, this narrative was told and retold by historians and government agents. But the Cheyenne warrior artists artfully documented their own version of the journey east and the life they left behind. Cheyenne Ledger Drawings: Stories of Warrior Artists features 52 deeply personal works by three Cheyenne artists who were part of this national forced assimilation project.”

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