November 1 to November 30
Adam Ekberg’s recent photographs began as sketches in the artist’s studio, a room in an old barn in New Jersey. These drawings of occurrences that Ekberg wants to see in the world are thumbtacked to the wall so he can conceive of how they can be staged for the camera. The intention is that the situations depicted look happenstance, like the viewer just stumbled upon them, but the behind-the-scenes production to achieve this effortless look is intricate. For example, how can a fire be set in a snowy landscape and not have any footprints around it?
Many of these images are shot in the very same barn, a large meandering structure built by many generations of hands between the 1840s and the 1960s. The barn is as unremarkable as the materials Ekberg uses in his constructions: candles, an animal skull found on the property, Bic lighters, a laser pointer, a prism and party lights. Other images, conceived of as sketches in his studio, were executed in the brambly pine forests nearby and still others were made in a clean white studio at an artist residency. Made with humble materials, Ekberg’s constructions add up to a sum greater than their parts, allowing for a poignant and perhaps even a transcendent moment.
William Powhida What Is Art?
September 1 to October 31
A portfolio of twelve archival digital prints measuring 11 x 14 inches in an edition of 20.
“Last fall I was asked by artist duo Ghost of a Dream to participate in an artist trade project, Art for Artists. The trade involved making a unique multiple, or a drawing that could incorporate some forms of reproduction. I used a stencil and airbrush to create a notebook paper ground, where the shadow and edge of the paper varied with the application of the airbrush to the stencil, creating some variation within the single outline of the sheet. On each of the grounds, I responded to a question I have been asking myself for years now, ‘What is Art?’ Each response was drawn in graphite on the stenciled pages after I added the blue lines in colored pencil. The responses reflect a growing suspicion that art may not be the social or cultural ‘good’ we'd like it to be, but perhaps the by-product of social and economic forces opposed to art. Making the drawings within a solidarity economy, trading not selling, opened up a less contradictory space to make the statements, but they were made for an audience of other artists."
Catch the Breeze Eric Eley, Ariana Page Russell, Ray Beldner
August 1 to August 31
Marc Dombrosky Self Awarness
July 1 to July 31
“Hand-embroidery overwriting on found texts and images unites works within a group (and all groups together, like chapters)—the thread that doubles written marks recounts stories, slows process, and perforates meaning. Works by the same anonymous authors are grouped together for consistency in these sets. The cases function as archives of vague associations—one work pointing towards the next, caught in a moving web/stream. Sleepwalking. Fragments from past projects mingle with new elements designed specifically for these arrangements, opens new possible interpretations, guided. Objects, schematics, and working notes shape atmosphere. Recombinant automatism—inventing fluid sequences and conjuring personal, intimate organizations. Future, present, and past circle back on one another. Slowness disorients.”
The title of the exhibition, Self Awarness, comes from a fragment in Case 5 / Untitled (I hate Andrew).
Patte Loper Still Life
June 1 to June 30
“Disassembling and reassembling familiar forms such as the human body and architecture are at the heart of my current project. As we enter a time of disruption and possibility, I am looking for ways to reassemble visual tropes to point to expanded visions, possible futures, and the ethics of being human.
“The three paintings in the Still Life with Percival series are based on drawings by Percival Lowell. Lowell was the renowned astronomer who first saw the canals of Mars through a telescope, which he documented through beautiful, detailed drawings. Eventually his theories proposed in his book, Mars and Its Canals, (published in 1911; Link) was debunked when no one else could see them. It was later realized that through an optical fluke, he was seeing the back of his own cornea (structure of the eye) superimposed on the surface of the planet.”
Melissa Pokorny Kindred Subjects
May 1 to May 31
“The works in this series are made up of elements found in my larger bodies of work. They are all related, each having to do with place, memory, the known, and easily accessible, as well as things that are hidden. The idea of wonder, the making of meaning, and ways of knowing the world are threads that connect these kin.”
Melissa Pokorny is a sculptor based in Urbana, Illinois. She has shown her work in venues across the US, in Chicago, New York City, Seattle, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. She is an Associate Professor at the University of Illinois, in Urbana Champaign.
Jesse Burke Wild & Precious
April 1 to April 31
“Wild & Precious brings together treasures from a series of road trips traveled with my daughter to explore the natural world. I use these adventures to encourage a connection between my child and nature and to give her an education that I consider essential—one that develops appreciation, respect, conservation, and self-confidence. On the road we talk about the vastness of nature and try to get more in touch with the earth. Together we document the routes we drive, the landscapes we discover, the creatures we encounter, even the roadside motels where we sleep. Wild & Precious reveals the fragile, complicated relationship that humans share with nature and attempts to strengthen those bonds.”
Stephen Hilyard Катюша (Katyusha)
March 1 to March 31
Platform was pleased to present the trailer for Stephen Hilyard's Катюша (Katyusha), a three channel, 28 minute video piece based on material collected at Pyramida, a showcase community established by the Soviet Union in the Svalbard territory in the high Arctic. At its peak Pyramida was home to more than 1000 coal miners and their families. It was evacuated in two days in 1998 leaving a ghost town. Катюша (Katyusha) presents three fictional characters who personify different aspects of Pyramida. The Guide takes the form of a gray sea bird, the Northern Fulmar. As the piece progresses we discover clues to the identity of two Lovers, a ballet dancer and a basketball player. The elaborately painted floor of the basketball court in Pyramida is a central motif, as is the abandoned ballet studio in the northern most corner of the town—once the most northerly ballet studio on earth. Time becomes unreliable as the viewer jumps back and forth uncontrollably between two time periods.
Robert Yoder JAME6
February 1 to February 28
Robert Yoder’s recent work features mysterious typographic forms drawn and painted primarily on tee-shirts or textiles which have been torn or ripped, then thickly covered in layers of oil paint. These works hint at clothing, perhaps even athletic uniforms, while not quite revealing their former selves. “I grew up in the south and ‘came of age’ during the early 1980’s in a very conservative area. Signs and symbols, from clothing, music, etc., took on another layer of meaning for me.”
Robert’s work is in many collections including Amgen Corporation, Boeing Corporation, The City of Seattle Public Art Collection, Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Hallmark Corporation, Henry Art Gallery, Hewlett Packard Corporation, Microsoft Corporation, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Portland Art Museum, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Swedish Health Services, Tacoma Art Museum, and Vulcan Incorporated.
Andrew Rubinstein Static Electricity
January 1 to January 31
In Andrew Rubinstein’s new body of work, stripes become stand-ins for filaments as well as for subatomic and cosmic building blocks. In many cases these marks appear to form a pattern and appear to touch, but they ultimately do not. It is with this vocabulary the artist attempts to represent how he marvels that society, and reality as we know it, appear to hold together. In the current political climate the tension between the appearance of order and its potential breakdown is especially poignant. In these paintings, compositions subtly shift between architectural structures, portraits, astronomical imagery, even textiles. The work approaches the heavy issues of the day but in a playful way.
Originally from Milwaukee, WI, Andrew received his MFA in Painting from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago in 1996. Since then he has moved around the Midwest, finally settling in Seattle with his wife. Besides being a painter, a worker, and a father of three, Andrew helps manage the family hobby ranch and takes care of all the animals.