FTA: Material Cultures, BRIC 2016

From the Archives is a project that comes from the abyss of nearly a year in quarantine during the Covid pandemic. Part deep-file-organization, part desperate need to feel connected to what I love in my life, part celebration (and reminder and recording) of the amazing things I've seen.


Up this week: Material Cultures @ BRIC, October 1, 2016, curated by Jordana Martin, Elizabeth Ferrer and Jenny Gerow


I love being able to see how other artists work with textures and textiles in their work. This beautifully curated show had a wonderful survey of amazing artists; some of my favorites below:


Adrian Esparza

I was obsessed with Luna Park, a site-specific installation by El Paso, TX artist Adrian Esparza. Esparza describes these installations as an “evolving self-portrait” as he evokes his childhood in the borderlands of Mexico and the United States, un-weaving sarape blankets and re-assembling them into modern geometric patterns. This specific piece is inspired by a 1916 postcard from the historic Luna Park at Coney Island.


Visually striking and rich with metaphor and symbolism, to me this was the stand-out in a room full of really strong pieces. The single thread painstakingly stretched taut and woven between countless precisely placed nails was nothing short of breathtaking. Such a beautiful embodiment of transformational themes is exactly the kind of work that drives me to go see art.

Detail of Luna Park by Adrian Esparza.

Marcela Zacarias

Another favorite was the work of Marcela Zacarias. Zacarias creates these beautiful sculptures, evoking exquisitely folded fabric, out of wood, window screen, polymer and paint. I was completely captivated by the billows and folds that appear so organic, frozen in motion, coming from such unwieldy and harsh materials. From the immaculately painted patterns to the shadows the pieces cast, every element of her works invites a second and third stare.

Other Standouts:

And finally, Still Burning (left), an intricate "embroidered painting" by Sophia Narrett, and Intervention: Indigo (right), a collection of costumes by Laura Anderson Barbata accompanied by videos of the pieces being activated on the streets of Brooklyn.