Gallery Y: Carson Fox, “Mimesis”
Gallery X: Eric Finzi, “Finzi-Contini Giardino”
October 24 – December 13, 2014
Opening Reception: Friday, October 24, 2014, 6-9pm
Linda Warren Projects is pleased to present two new solo exhibitions by gallery artists Carson Fox and Eric Finzi. Fox and Finzi share an affinity for the medium of resin, though each artist employs it via differing methods and different end results. In Fox’s exhibition, “Mimesis,” she continues her practice of using the man-made material of resin to cast three-dimensional representations of the natural world. In Finzi’s “Finzi-Contini Giardino,” he applies glossy epoxy resin to panel, depicting ghostly scenes that are of particular emotional significance to the artist as well as to viewers.
In her third solo exhibition at the gallery, New York-based artist Carson Fox fills Gallery Y with her signature cast resin sculptures and installations. Fox’s practice has long been engaged with the notion of countering the ephemerality of nature with the permanence of unnatural materials. The resin Fox uses holds a particular importance both aesthetically and conceptually. For her, the material’s ability to translate vivid pigments while maintaining a particular translucency recalls the kinds of candy-colored toys and trinkets that one would see overflowing the shelves of a dollar store. Here, Fox explores the contrasts between the organic and the inorganic, the permanent and the temporal, the fine and the throw-away.
Featured in “Mimesis” are recreations of natural elements like acorns, logs, coral and geodes, and these choices of forms are born of metaphorical associations from Fox’s own personal history. For instance, Orange Coral Creep, a vibrant, large-scale coral installation, references a youthful experience of taking home a small piece of coral discovered along the beach, and coaxing it to multiply over time into a full coral reef. The red, resin logs of Dad’s Woodpile references a traumatic childhood episode in which Fox’s mentally ill father decided to heat the family home using wood the family had scavenged. However, Fox’s father opted to heat only his own room while the rest of the home – and family – froze. For Fox, capturing these kinds of narratives in cast resin both replicates the experience of organic growth and attempts to halt inevitable decay in a practice that is as much about creation as it is about loss and absence.
Memories play a vital role in Eric Finzi’s work as well. The Maryland-based artist is known for the way in which he manipulates layers of translucent, liquid epoxy, creating surreal, dreamlike scenarios. Finzi’s material, alluringly tactile and extremely toxic, is perfectly suited for the kinds of imagery he employs. In his “paintings,” ghostly figures interact amongst romantic backdrops and ornate interiors, their fineness rendered with a loose, flowing hand and a high-gloss surface. The uniqueness of the artist’s process creates a finished product with a surface that is resolutely fixed and finite while also appearing eternally fluid and dynamic.
In this exhibition in Gallery X, Finzi displays a particularly potent series. The artist is a direct descendant of the Finzi-Continis, a Jewish family who lived in Ferrara, Italy during World War II. The artist’s family inspired the novel and subsequent Oscar-winning film, The Garden of the Finzi-Continis, which outlines a plot of interpersonal relationships amongst a backdrop of looming Nazi fascism. In the story, the wealthy and rather mysterious Finzi-Continis are slowly subject to more and more racial discrimination, eventually forcing their social lives to take place largely within the grounds of the Finzi-Continis’ gardens. Though surrounded by political turmoil of the time, the novel and film focus on tennis playing, bicycle riding, romance and suspicion. The story states that the Finzi-Continis were amongst those eventually sent to concentration camps where they all perished. However, in truth some of the family members escaped and survived, and in this series of works, the artist explores his familial history, traversing amongst fiction, memory and first-hand accounts. According to artist and critic Robert C. Morgan in the exhibition catalog essay:
Each of the works in this exhibition — the portraits and objects, the landscapes and the people, the expressive ticks and demeanor of the family – together constitute the meaning or absence of meaning latent within the Finzi Continis during one the darkest moments in human history. It was a time when human beings lost their ability to empathize with the suffering and angst of humanity through fear and withdrawal from life.
Mississippi-born, New York-based artist Carson Fox received her MFA from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University and her BFA from University of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Her work can be found in the permanent collections of The Museum of Arts and Design, The Royal Museum of Belgium, the Jersey City Museum, the Morris Museum of Art, the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Museum, the New Jersey State Museum, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Museum. She has participated in solo and group exhibitions at the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art; Morgan Lehman Gallery, New York; Claire Oliver Gallery, New York; O. K. Harris Gallery, New York; the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, Wales; the Brunswiker Pavilion Kiel, Kiel, Germany; the Delaware Center for Contemporary Art; and the Association Mouvment Art Contemporain, Chamalieres, France. Fox has received grants from the New Jersey Council on the Arts, the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, and the Mid Atlantic Art Foundation, a Willem Emil Cresson Award, and a New Jersey Print and Paper Fellowship at the Rutgers Center for Innovative Print and Paper.
A visual artist as well as a leading surgeon, scientist and writer, Maryland-based Eric Finzi has exhibited widely including venues such as Sloan Fine Art, New York; Metalstone Gallery, New York; Mark Wolfe Contemporary Art, San Francisco; Honfleur Gallery, Washington DC; Perihelion Arts, Phoenix; Billy Shire Fine Arts, Los Angeles; La Luz de Jesus Gallery, Los Angeles; Gallery Imperato, Baltimore; and Katonah Museum of Art, Katonah, NY amongst many others. Finzi’s artwork has been featured in such publications as Art Ltd. Magazine, SFAQ International Arts and Culture, Washington Post, Artnet Magazine, Coagula Art Journal and ARTnews. Finzi has contributed to articles in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time, Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Los Angeles Times and the London Times. This is Finzi’s first exhibition with Linda Warren Projects.