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Sarah Kabot, Shin Il Kim, Kwabena Slaughter

Smack Mellon
92 Plymouth Street, corner of Washington, 718-834-8761
September 27 - November 9, 2008
Reception: Saturday, September 27, 5 - 8 PM
Web Site

One by One is a site–specific work that replicates the architecture and lighting in the gallery. The paper recreation is rotated one foot counterclockwise from the original, creating a three-dimensional double. This repetition is intended to create visual tension between an original object and an intervention, between the existent and the imagined.

Making, for me, is an act of unraveling, of revealing structure at a precise level, and of re-presenting the peripheral elements of our environment. My work focuses attention on secondary aspects of our surroundings – ceilings, floors, light fixtures, notepads – objects that we move past or that pass through our hands with little attention. The sculptures and installations that respond to these objects take visual cues and materials from an original form to create a secondary experience of that object or location. The work is consciously subtle, encouraging the viewer to be attentive to the nuances of transformation or perception rather than the seductiveness of the material.

The work proposes an alteration in comprehension. The meaning, significance, or location of objects is not fixed. I seek to provide the viewer with an opportunity to observe their environment differently – to see each object as a focal point for scrutiny.

Sarah Kabot, was born in Troy, Michigan. The visually repetitive environment of the suburbs continues to inform and influence her sculptures, drawings, and installations. In 2006, Sarah was awarded the Wendy L. Moore Emerging Artist Grant, and had her first solo museum exhibition and catalog, titled On the Flip Side, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland, Ohio. Recent exhibitions include Paper City at Mixed Greens Gallery in New York, New York, and One by One at Smack Mellon in Brooklyn, New York. Sarah’s work has also been featured in exhibitions Retreat at Raw & Co, in Cleveland, Ohio, Trace in Kirkland, WA, and a traveling exhibition and catalog entitled Hot House: Expanding the Field of Fiber at Cranbrook, 1970-2007. She has been granted a 2009 Residency at Sculpture Space in Utica New York. Sarah received her B.F.A. from the University of Michigan School of Art and Design in 1998, and her M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2002. She is currently Assistant Professor of Foundations at the Cleveland Institute of Art in Ohio.

Decoded Love is based on the silent film, “The Toll of the Sea” – the first color feature film made in Hollywood in 1922. This perplexing story of unrequited love, similar to Puccini’s “Madame Butterfly,” stages a power struggle between the dominant male and obedient female character. The love story not only represents the complications of society’s subtle yet oppressive gender roles but also the contradiction of defending peace with war.

Interpreting and visually deconstructing the film, Shin Il Kim reveals the actual material of the movie; the indirect light from the playing film is his main distinct medium. In the darkened room of the installation, a pattern of lights emanate from a circular channel in the floor that is more than 8 feet in diameter. Viewers walk over and around the circular glow of the shimmering lights as the film’s original score plays softly in the background.

While maintaining the film’s sequence, the scenes of each character have been separated onto their own DVDs. Under the floor of the installation, five TV monitors play each character’s DVD illuminating the cut out circular channel. Decoded Love strips the narrative from the film’s love story in an attempt to reveal the true essence of the word love. The love story is visualized only as light, which is symbolic in many religions of purity, truth, goodness and life.

Kim is a native of Seoul, South Korea and now currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He received his BFA from Seoul National University and his MFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York, NY. Selected solo shows include: Galeria do Lago at the Museu de Republica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; The Riccardo Crespi Gallery, Milan, Italy; Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, Germany; and ARCO Art Center-Arts Council Korea, Seoul, Korea. Selected group shows include: Today Art Museum, Beijing, China; Singapore Biennale (2006), Singapore; Analog Animation at The Drawing Center, New York, NY and Macy Gallery at Columbia University, New York, NY. He has been awarded fellowships and grants from Lower Manhattan Cultural Council; The Pollack Krasner Foundation; Jerome Foundation; Smack Mellon; and Skowhegan Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation. His work is represented in the collections of the Queens Museum of Art; Queens, NY; ALTOIDS Curiously Strong Collection at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, NY; and Arts Council Korea. This year of 2008, he participates in Media City Seoul 2008, international media biennale, Hermes prize show in Seoul, and the third edition of the International Biennial of Contemporary Art of Seville in Spain.

Oh, Very, Yes! is an exhibition of my ongoing experiment with the idea of the photographic-scroll. Before the invention of both photography and the movie camera, the scroll was the way to depict a narrative that was taking place over time. A unique quality of the scroll is that all the scenes exist in one unbroken image. I have been trying to recover this unified presentation through photography. I modify and redesign manual cameras, increasing their film capacity, so they can make single images that occupy the entire length of a strip of film.

Installed in the gallery wall at Smack Mellon is a single expansive panoramic image that depicts multiple narrative “shorts” involving a single group of people. Figures repeat and scenes change as the stories play out over the length of one strip of slide film over fifty feet long.

Kwabena Slaughter lives and works in New York City. His work has been shown at Apex Art (2002), the New Museum of Contemporary Art (2004), Studio Museum in Harlem (2005), and David Castillo Gallery in Miami, FL. (2007). Slaughter also has extensive experience in the performing arts, including acting in the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival (1996), and dancing with the trapeze dance company Frequent Flyers Productions (2003). Slaughter has been a recipient of the following residencies and awards: New York State Council on the Arts New Media and Technology Fellowship (2006); Art Omi International Artists Residency (2007) and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Photography (2008).
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