Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Model Misbehavior at Satellite Gallery

This month at The Satellite Gallery an array of local artists have reinvented the ubiquitous wooden mannequin normally found in art stores and used as a base for artists in sculpture and drawings. What is most interesting about this exhibit are the differing approaches and interpretations of the form. Many of the 19 artists exhibiting work have completely restructured the doll, disguised it, or created new environments for it.

Curator/artist Marin Mitchell arrived at the concept of the show due to her love for artistic dolls. She says, "I think they are such an amazing way of blending multiple disciplines and techniques into one art piece." Using the wooden mannequin enabled her to "weave a cohesive thread through the show, without it having an actual theme as the base for everyone's designs."

Below is a small sample of dolls and some words by their makers. I definitely recommend that you go see the show for yourself, because there are so many other great dolls on display.

Anachronistic Tendencies
I constructed the base from wood and metal scraps, found objects, and cast resin. The figure is the original model reassembled and covered with air-dry clay.
From my previous experience with making dolls, I knew that whatever I made would somehow end up being a self-portrait. So I decided to just embrace that and actually approach the process with that intention. I'm a fairly old-fashioned person (or maybe I should say ancient-fashioned) in that I believe in honor, respect, loyalty, honesty, family (chosen or otherwise). Those values are often seemingly contradictory to the individualistic, achievement-oriented goals of Capitalist, Westernized culture. For me, "Anachronistic Tendencies" is about standing in my own truth, and making the ancient relevant to modern life.

-Marin Mitchell

Guilty Pleasures Portrait # 2
My piece is the second part of a series I'm working on of guilty pleasures. When Marin began talking about the idea for model misbehavior I was really excited about it, thinking that it was going to work well in this series. I am mainly 2D in my work so this piece was a real stretch for me, there were many, many failed attempts before I completed it. It is mostly constructed out of plywood, paper mache and paper clay.
-Hannah Dansie

Harold the Mouse Deer
Segment 16 is interested in the connections and similarities between humans and other mammals.
Harold is a shy creature who is always embarrassed by unwanted attention. He would often indulge in long, dramatic pauses every time he felt the urge.
-Segment 16 Art Collective

I wasn't sure what I was going to do with the doll until after I had taken it apart. At that point I had a desk full of whittled bits of wood, springs, and the stand. I was over thinking it and nothing was jumping out at me. That was when I decided to use clay and hair. I fashioned a nose, a muscular deltoid, and so on. I made a braid out of horse hair to drape in his hand. I have been interested in attaching a scientific approach to the act of gathering so it seemed obvious to me that this mensch belonged in a jar. .

Most of my stuff is two-dimensional so this was a nice, and somewhat challenging, departure.
-Leila Amiri

Bird Clan Mother
I'm known for my dolls, and have been making dolls for a long time, but having a standard manequin was a whole new thing for me. I spent a lot of hours just wrapping fabric. I really enjoyed the process. The stitches are a tribute to the Appalachian women quilters who came before me.
- Cher Shaffer

Satellite Gallery is located at 55 Broadway Street in downtown Asheville

The show will be up until July 25th.

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