Source, The Halls at Bowling Green/CUNY, New York, NY

Mark Dagley, Coded Grid (above)
Acrylic on canvas, 98 x 13 inches

Mark Dagley, Deathtrip (below)
Charcoal on paper, 48 x 36 inches

April 22 – May 28, 2010

Curated by Susan Ross and Melissa Staiger

Participating Artists:
Glen Cunningham, Mark Dagley, Laura Fayer, Molly Herman, Lori Kirkbride, Ben LaRocco, Rachael Wren

City College’s Center for Worker Education will host the third in its “Halls at Bowling Green” series of shows starting on April 22nd, according to series organizer Astrid Persans. Titled Source and organized by curators Melissa Staiger and Susan Ross, the group show features work by seven contemporary abstractionists who share concerns of feminine influence, antecedent and identity.

“Abstraction probably seems like an outmoded relic to some,” Persans remarked. “Yet Staiger and Ross have brought to bear not only a keen understanding of where it’s been but a positive sense of where it’s going. The result makes abundantly clear the extent to which even relatively recent styles are being freed from their presumed periods.”

“These seven artists all exhibit roots in the concept or experience of femininity,” Staiger continued. “Whether a 19th Century Swedish mystic, Palm Beach fashion designer Lily Pulitzer, the work of Helen Frankenthaler or the Yin-oriented Japanese aesthetics known as wabi-sabi, they each trace their work back to some decisively feminine factor.”

At the same time, Ross and Staiger point out, the very diversity of influences the artists acknowledge belies the simplification of placing them all under the umbrella of “Abstraction”. The seven—Lori Kirkbride, Glen Cunningham, Mark Dagley, Molly Herman, Rachael Wren, Ben LaRocco and Laura Fayer—while all nominally abstractionists, range in approach from Kirkbride’s preoccupation with color and pattern to LaRocco’s almost mystical appropriation of forms from the psyche.

The exhibition is to include a panel discussion moderated by Rossana Martinez, curator of Brooklyn’s MINUS SPACE, an alternative gallery dedicated to showing abstraction, minimalism and other reductive art. MINUS SPACE was included in P.S.1’s 2008-09 program, curated by Brooklyn Rail publisher Phong Bui.

The Halls at Bowling Green is a curatorial incubator serving the student body and downtown community with contemporary art exhibitions.

The Halls at Bowling Green/CUNY
The Cunard Building
25 Broadway, 7th Floor