Sikkema Jenkins & Co. is pleased to present a two-person exhibition of new work by Mark Bradford and Kara Walker on view from September 10th through October 17th, 2009.
While working in the differing areas of abstraction (Bradford) and representation (Walker), both artists share a number of over-lapping practices. Employing paper, both Bradford and Walker use collage and assemblage to produce much of their art. Bradford takes found paper from billboards, posters, and magazines that he finds on the streets around his Los Angeles studio, which he then layers and manipulates to create painterly compositions. Walker, who at times also utilizes found materials, uses the traditional practice of cutting paper silhouettes to create sculptures, videos, works on paper, and wall installations that depict scenes of misogyny, racism, and violence.
The artists also share an interest in exploring societal and cultural issues through their work. Bradford mines the physical materials of contemporary culture from his urban Los Angeles neighborhood in order to make his work, while Walker’s imagery references the history of slavery and race in America.
The exhibition will highlight both artists’ use of text: Bradford’s appropriation of low economy advertising in his merchant posters and Walker’s own writing reflecting on same themes she explores throughout her work.
The exhibition will feature a large sculpture of collaged soccer balls, a large work on canvas, as well as small paintings and works on paper by Mark Bradford. Kara Walker will present two new videos featuring silhouette puppets as well as paper sculptures and other works on paper and panel.
Mark Bradford was born in 1961 in Los Angeles, where he continues to live and work. He received both his BFA (1995) and his MFA (1997) from the California Institute for the Arts. He is the recipient of the Bucksbaum Award for his contribution to the Whitney biennial in 2006. Recent exhibitions include Prospect.1, New Orleans (2008) and Neither New Nor Correct: New Work by Mark Bradford, Whitney Museum of American Art (2007). A mid-career survey of Bradford’s work will open at Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus Ohio in the spring of 2010 and will travel to several other major institutions.
Kara Walker was born in Stockton, California, and grew up in Atlanta, Georgia. She graduated from the Atlanta College of Art in 1991 and received her MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1994. She is the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships including the John D. and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation Achievement Award (1997), the Deutsche Bank Prize (2004), and the Larry Aldrich Award (2005). Walker’s works have been exhibited internationally in numerous group and solo shows. Her recent survey My Compliment, My Enemy, My Oppressor, My Love, opened at The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis in February 2007 and traveled to Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Whitney Museum of American Art; Hammer Museum in Los Angeles; and Museum of Modern Art in Fort Worth.