The exhibition “Over, Under, Through” presents works of sculpture and installation by Elisa Berry Fonseca, Suzi Fox, and Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin will be on exhibit in the Kay Gallery at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown beginning Saturday, Nov. 11 through December 16. The exhibit features three contemporary sculptors whose work often focuses on the manipulation of common materials to create new three-dimensional forms.
Elisa Berry Fonseca stacks and cuts scraps of tar paper, felt, plywood, and carpet or welds and brazes steel wire into sculptural installations that replicate scenes found in the natural world.
Suzi Fox responds to the inherent characteristics of carefully chosen materials and tools, many found at the hardware store, then manipulates them into thought-provoking sculptures.
Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin uses additive forms of construction, often using materials considered obsolete, in works that question how we produce, consume and discard technological inventions.
Highlighting the varied techniques employed by Fonseca, Fox, and Yurcisin, “Over, Under, Through” also seeks to emphasize the connection the three artists share in using repetitive processes to transform manmade materials. At first glance, we are drawn to their powerful forms and appealing tactile surfaces.
On closer inspection, we appreciate the physical process each artist has used, as we notice the striped layers Fonseca has stacked from roofing felt, the stitched rows Fox has knitted from carpenter’s string, and the webbed patterns Yurcisin has woven from strips of plastic video tape. Engaging with each work, we begin to contemplate and recognize how each artist has also imbued their sculptural forms with deeper layers of meaning.
Elisa Berry Fonseca finds comfort in repetitive actions and techniques. Her sculptures are derived from a process based on responses to materials. Hours spent cutting, stacking, welding, or brazing amass an accumulation of material. In works like “Black Stalagmites,” she individually cuts pieces of tar paper and colored felt, then stacks them onto metal rods. Her layering process echoes the natural process by which strata of sediment build landmasses. Fonseca then carves the layered stacks of manmade materials into tapered spires, in the same way that wind and water might carve away at canyons. She also bends, welds and brazes steel wire to create more animated gestural forms. Her stalagmites emerge from the gallery floor while stalactites hang from the ceiling in a canyon-like installation.
Suzi Fox uses process as the primary means of generating form and meaning. Her sculptures explore a reinterpretation of common manmade objects and techniques of building forms by hand. She is fascinated with discovering new approaches to working with a material and utilizing these to make forms.
Fox often uses manipulations such as carving, weaving and twisting. In works like “STRAIT-LINE III,” Fox has knitted the red string from a carpenter’s chalk line reel to craft a well-fitted “sweater” for a three-dimensional cube. Her sculptures are infused with humor and playful explorations of materials, but upon closer inspection many suggest deeper social concerns. Fox ultimately hopes the viewer looks and contemplates a little deeper to recognize the layered ways we can experience and interpret meaning.
Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin repurposes obsolete recording materials, like video cassette tapes, and typewriter ribbon. The panels, cages, and nets she weaves are reflective surfaces that question the speed in which we produce, consume, and discard our technologies. Her installations and sculptures relate to water and landscape, even though they are made with materials entirely manufactured by man.
In works like “Suspended Reflections,” Yurcisin saturates space and asks the viewer to discover the unavoidable relationship between the inner-outer walls of her pieces. She intentionally pours copious amounts of labor into the precise and deliberate construction of her work. Yurcisin is concerned with the protection and preservation of our planet and uses hi-tech residue to question the sustainability of a society based on consumption. By building metaphors that explore the caging relationship we have with the natural world, she explores the impossibility of our superiority to nature.
BlackRock Center for the Arts presents the exhibition “Over, Under, Through: Elisa Berry Fonseca, Suzi Fox, Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin,” from November 11 through December 16, in the Kay Gallery. The center will host a Meet the Artists Reception on Saturday, November 11 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm where the artists will deliver brief remarks and be on hand to answer questions.
Fonseca, Fox, and Yurcisin will deliver an Artist Talk and Gallery Tour on Saturday, December 2, 2017 beginning at 2:00 pm. Admission to the galleries and events are free. Galleries are open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm with evening and Sunday hours offered when performances and classes are held. Please call 301-528-2260 to confirm.
BlackRock Center for the Arts is centrally located in the heart of Germantown, next to the Germantown Public Library, at 12901 Town Commons Drive in Germantown. Free parking is available in the lot located at the rear of the building and along the street.
Top: Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin - GreenBlue Breeding Cage, aluminum, acrylic, ribbon, LED light.
Next: Elisa Berry Fonseca - Canyon Spires, felt, steel, variable dimensions.
Next: Elisa Berry Fonseca - Black Stalagmites, tar paper, fabric, steel, variable dimensions.
Next: Suzi Fox - STRAIT-LINE III, knitted chalk line reel, 38 x 6.5 x 6.
Next: Fabiola Alvarez Yurcisin - Suspended Reflections, VHS video tape, vinyl, PVC pipe, rope.
Next: Suzi Fox - 600 Grit, 400 Grit, waterproof sandpaper, 12 x 12 x 1 inches (each panel).
Images courtesy BlackRock Center for the Arts.