Curated by Jade Doskow
The five artists in the show—Allison Kaufman, Bedel Tiscareno, Lambert Fernando, Erica Allen, and Alison Malone—deal with their own personal angels and demons in a way that feels plucked from a dream. The work brings up many complex issues—identity, gender politics, role playing, war, sense of self—in a challenging and unsettling manner.
In Allison Kaufman’s video and performance piece, Dancing with Divorced Men. Kaufman examines her own parent’s divorce through intimate—but forced—interactions with men who have often recently gone through this experience. The work is tender, witty, and sad, raising questions of how divorced people cope in their personal spaces and in intimate situations.
Bedel Tiscareno’s violent yet whimsical sculptures draw upon history, mythology, and current events. The beautifully sculpted forms writhe and fall in fictional battles, causing causing an immediate visceral reaction while pointing out the absurdity of the oft-neglected war our country is currently engaged in. On a more diaphanous note, Lambert Fernando’s highly crafted and textural paintings allude to the ethereality of memory and the changing forms of one’s self. Utilizing a delicate color palette and unusual materials, such as doilies, plaster, and house paint, Fernando evokes the essence of a lost past and uncertain future. Often scratched into the plaster are drawings of Fernando’s long-lost family members or characters borrowed from time.
Erica Allen’s portraits are fascinatingly ambiguous; something is not quite right, but it is nearly impossible to pinpoint. They can be best described, quite simply, as characters out of a dream. Allen goes to great lengths gathering source material for these portraits—junk shops, estate sales, and barbershops. The resulting images are reminiscent of Hans Holbein’s portraiture, exquisite in their hyper-reality and delicate, painterly tones.
And finally, Alison Malone’s portraits of young girls in Grecian robes add the final, mysterious element to the show. Malone’s penetrating pictures create an unsettling reality, modern pictures of innocent girls in the midst of a strange and ancient secret society. Like Allen’s work, Malone’s portraits have a painterly resonance in scale, composition, and feeling.
In a dynamic play between masculine / feminine and reality/ fantasy, the five artists in Dream-Self create work which could inspire daydreams as well as nightmares.