CURATOR CHOICE

DECEMBER 2020 | JANUARY 2021 | ARTXPUZZLES: PUZZLES WITH PURPOSE selected contemporary curator Christopher Eamon for a select Curators Choice section, which is a global initiative by special invitation only for international curators from around the world to create new and innovatiive artist jigsaw puzzles with our company.

Mr. Eamon has selected contemporary artists Jennifer Coates, (New York, NY and Lakewood PA)  Wanda Koop, (Winnipeg, Manitoba) Anna Ostoya, (New York, NY) Mai Thu Perret, (Geneva, Switzerland), Joan Jonas (New York and Cape Brenton,NS ) and Richard Storms (Toronto, Ontario).

CURATOR CHOICE: 

Being “spotlight curator” is in some ways similar to organizing an exhibition. Selecting and grouping always highlights artworks and artists—spotlighting is one of the effects of exhibition making. Another is the hope that selected works will resonate with one other, hopefully creating new linkages among them. In this case, it’s a pleasure to highlight younger and older artists, lesser-known and well-known artists. Oftentimes a set of parameters is laid out, a rubric or context within which a curator works to fill out or populate an exhibition. Here, the context is the fundraiser Puzzles with Purpose. The works are multiples, which will be sold separately with proceeds going to good causes during this time of pandemic, struggle and hopefully change. So, my spotlight will not operate exactly like an exhibition; it will simply highlight.

Since our multiples come in the form of puzzles, puzzling—the act of piecing together a puzzle—is a major part of the context for this project. Puzzlers puzzle. They pay special attention to multiple fragments and put them together with a view to the whole. For hours and days at time, a puzzler might stare and stare at pieces and the two-dimensional representation they attempt to match. It requires an attenuated attention to form, color and image. In reconstructing the work of art, the puzzler mirrors the act of artistic creation. Most artists would be very pleased if viewers of public exhibitions would pay as much attention. Artists very often seek ‘to puzzle’ in another sense. They seek to perplex, or perhaps confuse, in the hope that viewers will take the time to investigate, analyze and put the work together for themselves. Much like the act of creation, the act of puzzling reflects the process of discovery in reverse, working from the parts to recreate a pre-existing original. In light of this compelling context, I chose five works by five artists for this project that are not only perplexing works of art (in a good way), but also visually seductive ones. I am grateful to all the artists who agreed to participate in this innovative project. Curatorial Statement: Christopher Eamon

Biography: Christopher Eamon is an independent curator and writer. He has curated notable exhibitions at museums and galleries internationally including at the Hamburger Bahnhof Museum for Contemporary Art, Berlin; MoMA PS1, New York; the Institute of Contemporary Art, London; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Aspen Art Museum. In 2011, he curated Rearview Mirror: New Art from Central and Eastern Europe for The Power Plant, Toronto, and the Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton. His publications include Anthony McCall: the Solid Light Films and Related Works (Northwestern University Press, Evanston, IL, and Steidl, Germany, 2005); writings on film and video art from 1950 to 1980 in Film and Video Art (Tate Publishing, 2009); and he is the co-editor, with Stan Douglas, of Art of Projection (Hatje Cantz, 2009), an anthology on the history and significance of projected images from the eighteenth century to the present. He was formerly the assistant Curator of Film and Video at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York and Adjunct Professor in the History of Art at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, New York. 

 

 

SEPTEMBER 2020 | ARTXPUZZLES: PUZZLES WITH PURPOSE selected contemporary curator Alaina Simone for a select Curators Choice section, which is a global initiative by special invitation only for international curators from around the world to create new and innovatiive artist jigsaw puzzles with our company.

Ms. Simone has selected contemporary artists Alternonce Gumby, (Bronx NYC)  Helina Metaferia, (Washington DC) Kharis Kennedy (California) Barbara Nessim (NYC) and Yashua Klos (Chicago-NYC).

 

CURATOR CHOICE

The first jigsaw puzzle was a map to teach geographical borders visually.  During an unprecedented time in our history, where physical doors and geographical borders have closed due to the Coronavirus, we've used technology to create new and innovative ways of engaging socially. Art x Puzzle: Puzzle With A Purpose is an opportunity to not only directly raise support for organizations that are making our society healthier but equally expand awareness and encourage engagement with artists who use their art practice as a "catalyst for change".   

Their work reflects autobiographical themes around form, color and symbolism to investigate abstracted depictions of identity, race, class and history in the United States and the world at-large.

The process and research-based intergenerational artists featured in this selection are working across mediums and disciplines. Their work references autobiographical themes to create "new ways of seeing" and considers their local communities that inform their respective art practices. Alteronce Gumby has childhood memories of growing up in Harrisburg, PA and afternoons spent working on jigsaw puzzles with his grandmother; he uses his hands to construct his paintings like a jigsaw puzzle allowing him to shape spaces of light to create hues and shapes that offer him a space of freedom.  Helina Metaferia is a first-generation Ethiopian-American, and she incorporates written and oral documentation to portray her interest in art as activism; she collages images of her own body as well as the bodies of her community to activate her work through action.  Kharis Kennedy was born in Los Angeles, CA and grew up all over the world; she uses her body and sources images from her island-based community in the Virgin Islands as sites of knowledge to reveal her innermost truths about privilege and society's obsession with consumption, consumerism and self-indulgence. Yashua Klos explores his autobiographical memories of growing up with a single mother on Chicago's South Side; he challenges signs of marginalization, male blackness and urban mythology. As a lifelong New Yorker, Barbara Nessim's work portrays her community, growing up in the Bronx to reflect ideas around migration, immigration, integration and population growth. Equally, these artists are active in their local communities and spend time developing community based initiatives to promote ideas around art and activism.  

Alaina Simone, Curatorial Statement  

Click Articles: Under the Radar: The Top Five Black Woman You Should Know in the Art World, According to Alaina Simone | Forbes