MOCA Cleveland to Present Michelle Grabner Solo Show, 11/1-2/16/2014
MOCA Cleveland presents the first comprehensive, solo museum show of the work of American artist Michelle Grabner, on view November 1, 2013 through February 16, 2014. Titled I Work From Home, the exhibition will feature a range of Grabner's paintings, prints, video works, and sculptures, which investigate concepts of work, labor, and the social dynamics of domestic life.
MOCA's presentation of the exhibition comes at a moment when the artist is being widely recognized for the first time in her prolific career. For instance, she has been selected as one of three curators of the 2014 Whitney Biennial at New York's Whitney Museum of American Art. The exhibition at MOCA offers an opportunity to intimately get to know this artist's many professional layers and their influences on her art - painter, sculptor, writer, critic, teacher, curator, gallery owner.
Grabner considers herself a conceptual artist and her work seeks ideals of orderliness and routine. Her early work reflected her domestic environment and her later abstract work focused on repetition. Her most recent work revisits the domestic realm through the use of fabric and gingham patterns.
The exhibition provides a study of this Midwestern, suburban artist who blends her work and life in inseparable ways - a story of her life informing art, her art influencing life. Organized by David Norr, MOCA chief curator, the exhibition looks closely at Grabner's curatorial work, especially at The Suburban, the eight-by-eight foot artist-run project space that she and her husband, Brad Killam, have maintained next door to their suburban home in Oak Park, Illinois since 1998. For the exhibition, MOCA will rebuild an exact replica of The Suburban in the main gallery to accommodate a rotating mini-series of exhibits and programs. Artists featured will include Karl Haendel (Nov. 1 - 28); Michael Smith (Dec. 1 - Jan. 2); Amanda Ross-Ho (Jan. 5 - 23); and Jessica Jackson Hutchins (Jan. 26 - Feb. 16).
Haendel (b. New York City, 1976) creates meticulously hand-rendered, photorealistic graphite drawings which reproduce images culled from the world of mass media and everyday objects. Smith (b. Chicago, 1951) is an influential figure in performance, video, and installation art. Ross-Ho, (b. Chicago 1975 and based in Los Angeles) works in painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, and photography. Hutchins (b. 1971, Chicago and based in Portland, OR) is an Oberlin College graduate. She is known for her ceramics, paper-mache sculptures, and collages.
Michelle Grabner (b. 1962, Oshkosh, WI) lives and works in Oak Park, Il. She is Chair of the Painting and Drawing Department of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has been selected as one of three curators for the 2014 Whitney Biennial in New York City. Solo exhibitions of her work have been held at Peregrine Program, Chicago; Ulrich Museum, Wichita, KA; and Cranbrook Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, MI. She has been included in group exhibitions at Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Tate St. Ives, Cornwall, England; and Kunsthalle Bern, Switzerland. Her work is in the collections of the Walker Center, Minneapolis; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Luxembourg Mudam Museum, Luxembourg; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, among others. For more information, visit www.michellegrabner.com.
Simon Evans Also on View at MOCA Cleveland
Complementing Grabner's exhibition is an overview of the past five years of work by British artist Simon Evans. This is his first solo show in the Midwest and is titled Only Words Eaten by Experience. The exhibition invites visitors into the mind of the artist as he tries to make sense of his world, and his works offer glimpses of his humor, fragility, and humility.
Evans uses a meticulous, deliberate process of applying and transforming common objects into works of art that heighten the visitor's awareness of shared everyday experiences and feelings. He assembles simple materials like paper scraps, scotch tape, pencil shavings, and white-out into diagrams, maps, flowcharts, and diary entries that obsessively catalogue the fragments of life. His text-based drawings, weavings, and embroideries share confessional, often humorous observations.
Simon Evans (b. 1972, London, UK) lives and works in New York. Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at Musée d'Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean (MUDAM), Luxembourg; Aspen Art Museum; White Columns, New York; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. A travelling two-person exhibition featuring Evans and Öyvind Fahlström was held at Kunshtal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen and Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Germany. Evans's work has been featured in numerous group exhibitions, including at Louisana Museum, Humlebaek, Denmark; Henry Art Gallery, Seattle; Tate Modern, London; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, Germany; the 12th Istanbul Biennial; and the 27th Sao Paulo Biennial.
The upcoming season's exhibitions continue to call attention to important artists working today and delve deep into their lives and art, providing visitors with rich insights, intimate connections and thoughtful interactions. The fall 2013 exhibitions in particular offer new perspectives on more deeply understanding the world through these artists' work.