NURTUREart was pleased to present To begin, at the beginning, curated by Sam Perry and featuring artists: Megan Broadmeadow, Mike Calway-Fagen, Pascal-Michel Dubois, Katalin Hausel, Mikael Kennedy, Tommy Kwak, and Phuc Le. This show was part of a trilogy of exhibitions involving emerging artists, and drawing upon literary tendencies and observations.
To begin, at the beginning addressed the frequent, existential condition of artists and creative professionals as expats. Rejecting the comforts of home for spaces to incubate ideas, the artists in this group exhibition tend to stray far from familiar territories. Their works demonstrate a desire to bridge the gaps between the domestic realities we construct for ourselves and the geographically nested home, indirectly posing the question of what “returning” really means.
Inspired by storytelling as well as by literary narration, this exhibition draws connections from writers like James Joyce, who purportedly wrote about Dublin culture in rich detail from other cities; and Dylan Thomas, who wrote while back and forth between New York City and his home of Wales. Likewise, the artists in To begin, at the beginning are conceptually bound to the transience of revisiting one’s past while confronting one’s present.
Whether rooted in purely abstract notions of place or underscored by daily routine, the artworks in this exhibition relay histories as deeply personal as sometimes contorted. While some take stances to further estrange themselves from ideal notions of home, others try to alleviate loss and distance by reinvigorating old memories, ultimately turning the imagined, ceremonious return home into an anticlimax. Through these and other concerns, this exhibition explores and expands on the limits and significance of distance itself, stretching physical and temporal limits to match artistic desires and inclinations.
Featured image: Mike Calway-Fagen, The Ever Expanding, 2011. Photo on vinyl, 48 x 108 inches.