the:artist:network is pleased to present the first New York solo exhibition of Hagar Schmidhalter titled, Headfirst. The exhibition consists of video, sculpture and works-on-paper.
The title comes from one of Hagar Schmidhalter’s pieces, a work-on-paper, made during her residency in New York at the:artist:network. As such, the exhibition title refers to her metaphoric plunge, or birth, into her new environment where explorations of her surroundings go beyond those of an artist and into an array of roles including historian, ethnographer, geographer, magazine editor and interior designer. This is accentuated, for example, in works on-paper that converge drawing and collage; the latter medium, from which her multivalent narratives are constructed, is culled from diverse magazines, hence her mixing of art with a magazine editor’s eye. Likewise, her placements of these works become interior design-like appendages. In another sculpture she has constructed a three-dimensional model of what appears to be a computer generated landscape, but it is an environment deplete of organic presence where the artist as geographer has surveyed for us a dystopian world of our own making. Rounding out the exhibition are two videos. One video is played on a flat screen monitor and is an extension of the three-dimensional sculpture. The other is titled, Burning House, and is a projection of a house engulfed in flames. Fire is referred to here for both its destructive and creative potential, and for its ability to simultaneously invoke beauty and the horrific sublime.
Curated by Raul Zamudio