Earlier in the season I wrote about the Fridge. The Fridge, one of the new art spaces cropping up in DC lately. A space can be used for anything, but must have an industrial, warehouse feel. Otherwise, it is not a space. It is a gallery. Yuck.
Even though found in Eastern Market (in an alley between E and G Streets and 8th, SE), the Fridge has a grungy vibe that one would not think possible for the cutesy eatery neighborhood.
Beyond the location, the building itself is pretty neat. The outside wall is regularly painted over, going from a vibrant mural to a pink silouette of birds on a wire. I presume these paintings are done by the owner’s friends, but I have no evidence of that. I have heard nothing to deny it either: modern reporting conundrum.
The current exhibit being shown in the warehouse-y inside is by Graham Boyle. You may be familiar with him from the Hillyer Art Space in Dupont (stay tuned for that review; it’ll be a doozy). This exhibit shows some one and two-color screen prints onto found materials, as well as cut paper on found metals. This is the artist’s search “to find balance between conflicting feelings of hope and despair as we near the end of the first decade of the 21st century.” Heavy stuff. Makes me think about my conflicting feelings of hope and despair as we arrive at the mid-term election.
But we’re not going to talk about that! We’re going to talk about how the art made me happy (or art-happy). I can’t say why or how, but that’s why I love art so much. It is not about agreeing or disagreeing with a critique, or knowing how it was done (though this can be fun), or about meeting the artist. It can be all these things, but for me, it’s about seeing the art. And that’s all. Looking at one piece for a long, long time can be a transformative experience.
I looked at Static Seasons 3 for a long, long time. This one was done by adding acid and scratches to a photo negative, then projecting it onto metal so it looks like this. Pieces like this one are the artist’s reflection on “the tragicomic nature of our existence, but also [meant] to challenge the social and political structures of the hegemony through…” and so on and so forth.
Forget all that–the why and the wherefore. And just look at the art.
Update: The exhibition is free at the Fridge. Artist’s talk is Tuesday, November 9, at 7:30. I’ll be there, not paying attention.