Marsha Pels poetically recontextualizes found objects of power and politics. Cohesion in her works is achieved though this particular modus operandi, though not necessarily in subject matter. Her gutsy recent exhibit at Schroeder Romero, “Dead Mother, Dead Cowboy,” made a connection between the recent death of her mother and abandonment by her partner. Artworks within this exhibition included a fluorescent lit, crystal-clear casting of Pels’ mother draped in mink stoles, her ex-lover on a deconstructed motorcycle, and castings of her own hands made in her mother’s gloves. For lack of a better word, this personal and haunting expose on desire, loss and morning is brave—laying bare an honest, and witty personal narrative. Recently Marsha discussed her creative inspiration, and her in-depth thought process behind her recent sculptural series.
Brian Willmont is a multi-talented creative. Along with his partner, Cody Hoyt, he spearheads Apenest, a design/art collective that self-produces collaborative silkscreens, graphics and a stunning full color book showcasing a stable of brilliant contemporary artists. Beautiful/Decay recently received a copy of their book and was blown away by the attention to design and the quality of the artists included. As an artist, Willmont also creates invididual work—his stunning works on paper detail an idiosyncratic personal vocabulary, often leaning towards fantastical situations, brightly colored in a hyperspectra of acid-induced prismatic color. Lurking beneath the enticing exterior, however, a darker, more apocalyptic narrative manifests itself; apparent in Willmont’s depiction of decaying architectural structures and implied destruction.
Katherine Sherwood creates sumptuous paintings that visualize, in a lyrical and esoteric fashion, the age old metaphysical concerns of the body, life after death, and the tenuous relationship between art and science. Sherwood’’s works exhibit a Buddhist, Zen-like approach to color, form and composition, elegantly balanced and unafraid of both dense areas of joyous, swirling patterns and passages of silent, empty space. Just below the seemingly abstract planes is a latent structure of corporeal diagrams, such as angiograms, brittle tree-like linear nerve endings, and mystical Solomon’s seal, lending the paintings a religious, even ecstatic talisman-like quality.