Dec 15, 2011 — Feb 18, 2012
Featuring work by: Paul Swenbeck
Fleisher/Ollman is delighted to announce solo exhibitions by Paul Swenbeck and Joan Nelson on view from December 15, 2011 through February 18, 2012 with a reception with the artists on December 15 from 6-8pm. In Dor and Oranur, Paul Swenbeck will present large ceramic works inspired by prehistoric fossils, plants and animals. For her first exhibition with the gallery, Joan Nelson will exhibit layered, reverse painting on glass constructions that contain secret worlds and impossible landscapes.
For his third exhibition at the gallery, Paul Swenbeck presents Dor and Oranor, comprised of two sculptural tableaux of a prehistoric drama. On the largest "stage" in the main gallery, ceramic works that appear more flora than fauna are engaged in a symbolic battle for life. Otherworldly in color and form with towering stems and spindly tendrils, these predatory animals are easily confused for flowering, alien-like plants. Adjacent to this main installation, the artist will install a cave-like ritual space that might belong to man's earliest ancestors. Orange and blue lighting and a sound piece created in collaboration with Aaron Igler add to the strange and dramatic atmosphere of the installation. With darkness and humor, Swenbeck evokes life's energy and cycles in the most ambitious installation of his work to date.
Paul Swenbeck's (b. 1967, Massachussetts) work combines sculpture, painting and photography to create installations that filter craft, occult and spiritual themes through his own idiosyncratic perspective. Swenbeck grew up in Salem, Massachusetts, a town synonymous with the witch trial hysteria of Colonial America. Recent exhibitions include Dirt on Delight: Impulses that Form Clay at The Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, and The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Swenbeck graduated with a degree in ceramics from Massachusetts College of Art in 1991.
Jennie Hirsh reviews Joan Nelson and Paul Swenbeck in Art in America.