P·P·O·W is pleased to present RECOVERY, a group exhibition exploring art as a critical gesture towards collective resistance and remembrance. Acting as individual altar spaces, the works presented in this exhibition form commemorative sites to recover knowledge, provide proof, overcome loss, and contain memories.
Unearthing realities buried beneath layers of distorted visual understandings of historic representation, RECOVERY focuses on the notion of “insurgent commemoration”, defined by social justice scholar Roger Simon as “attempts to construct and engage representations that rub taken-for-granted history against the grain so as to revitalize and rearticulate what one sees as desirable and necessary for an open, just and life-sustaining future.” Forming alternative monuments for the living, RECOVERY gives a diverse range of narratives a voice, a platform and a meeting place. Building upon P·P·O·W’s rich programmatic history, RECOVERY brings together new works by gallery artists Dinh Q. Lê, Carlos Motta, and Chiffon Thomas along with Dread Scott, Faith Wilding, Carlos Reyes, Harry Gould Harvey IV, Brittni Ann Harvey, Daniel T. Gaitor-Lomack, Rajkamal Kahlon, Alex Ito, and Astrid Terrazas.
Together, the works exhibited in RECOVERY transform the gallery into both a devotional and construction site; an architectural space that is simultaneously coming apart and falling together. With two new psychologically charged sculptures, Chiffon Thomas displays their emblematic resourcefulness, utilizing materials such as concrete, rocks, nails, rebar wire, and wooden planks. Painted in white and emanating light, one of Thomas’ works will be suspended by an electrical lift at specific times throughout the day, acting as a kind of lighthouse, watchtower, or guiding phantom. In another spectral installation, Never Forget, Never Forgive: They Left Us to Die (2006), Dread Scott memorializes individuals killed by Hurricane Katrina. Destroyed and remade whenever exhibited, the wheat-pasted posters on plywood panels with “Post No Bills” stenciled overtop detail how each of the remembered souls lived and died and are based on “martyr” posters of Palestinians killed by Israel pasted all over Palestine. Bearing witness to yet another facet of American life, Carlos Reyes’ saltwaterfarm serves as a monolith of residue. Comprised of 5,264 plastic egg crates, hollowed out chicken eggs, and industrial sand, Reyes’ towering translucent structure confronts the repetition, accumulation, and constraint of our society.
Building upon the ecological corrosion hinted at in Reyes’ work, pioneering eco-feminist Faith Wilding’s papyrus scrolls address the environmental deterioration in her lifetime, specifically in South America and her native Paraguay. Recording recent on-the-ground research into her birth country’s ongoing ecological crises, Wilding documents in watercolor, gold leaf, and handwritten ink, the metamorphosis of the natural world through human intervention and destruction. Similarly preserving ancient and ancestral ties, Dinh Q. Lê utilizes a traditional Vietnamese mat weaving technique learned from his aunt in his ongoing Monuments & Memorials series. Presenting a new photographic weaving, the artist combines an image of Tou Sleng (S-21) High School in Cambodia which was turned into torture center by the Khmer Rouge from 1975 to 1979, now a memorial museum, with a wall carving of the 10th century Cambodian Temple, Banteay Srey, now considered a monument. Using photography as both a technology for image making and an apparatus for distributing ideological narratives, Dinh Q. Lê reveals the failings of individual memory and collective perceptions.
In this critical time of re-evaluation, RECOVERY explores questions of how to inhabit space with renewed urgency. Through the process of art-making, we record, recount, and recover previously silenced truths that the essentialism and prejudices of visual politics have not been able to suppress.
Brittni Ann Harvey (b.1992, Newport, RI) is a multimedia artist living and working in Fall River, MA. Harvey received her BFA in Textiles from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2017. Harvey is the co-founder of The Fall River Museum of Contemporary Art, Fall River’s first contemporary art museum. Harvey has two solo exhibitions forthcoming this fall at Anthony Greaney Gallery, Sommerville, MA and at Someday, New York, NY. She was recently in a three-person exhibition at Nir Altman, Munich, Germany, in February 2021 and has been featured in group exhibitions at Motel, Brooklyn, NY; Fall River Museum of Contemporary Art, Fall River, MA; Kunsthalle Wichita, Wichita, KS; Alyssa Davis Gallery, NY, Kristen Lorello Gallery, New York, NY and Safe Gallery, East Hampton, NY.
Harry Gould Harvey IV (b. 1991, Fall River, MA) lives and works in Fall River, MA. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions include The Confusion of Tongues!, Bureau, New York, 2021; Coniunctio, with Kyung-Me, Bureau, New York, 2019; EARTH CRISIS, with Samantha Durand, Alyssa Davis Gallery, New York, 2018; Amen, Thanks Computer God!, with Jesse Sullivan, Freddy, Harris, NY, 2018; Prudence, Patience, Hope & Despair, Motel, Brooklyn, 2018; Harry Gould Harvey IV with Species, Atlanta Contemporary, Atlanta, 2018. Harvey is the founder of the curatorial project Pretty Days and co-founder of the Fall River Museum of Contemporary Art, Fall River, MA. Harvey is preparing for a two-person exhibition with Faith Wilding at the David Winton Bell Gallery, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, 2021. Harvey will also participate in 2021 New Museum Triennial, Soft Water Hard Stone, opening October 28.
Alex Ito (b. 1991, Los Angeles, CA) is a visual artist based in New York, NY. Ito received his BFA in sculpture from Pratt Institute in 2013 and since has exhibited in various national and international galleries and institutions. Recent solo exhibitions include Half Life, Interstate Projects, Brooklyn NY, 2020; You Promised Catastrophe, Zeller Van Almsick, Vienna, Austria, 2019; Act I: The Crucible's Nest, AALA Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, 2016; Act II: Carcass and the White Light, Springsteen Gallery, Baltimore, MD, 2016. Ito is the director of Chen’s, a Brooklyn-based gallery co-run with Howie Chen. His written works have been published in Silica Mag and Affidavit.
Rajkamal Kahlon (b. 1974, Auburn, CA) is an American artist living and working in Berlin. Kahlon recuperates drawing and painting as modes of aesthetic and political resistance. Her work focuses on the spectres of colonialism, often calling up the material culture and ethnographic research of western colonial archives. Kahlon received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of California, Davis, and a Master of Fine Arts in Painting and Drawing from the California College of Arts. She is an alumna of Skowhegan and the Whitney ISP. This fall, Kahlon will be appointed as the new professor of painting at the University of Fine Arts in Hamburg, Germany. Kahlon’s work has been exhibited internationally in biennials, including the 2012 Taipei Biennial, Meeting Points 7, and the 2nd Labin Industrial Biennial, Croatia and in museums, including Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Antwerp, Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw, Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City. Kahlon is the recipient of numerous grants, awards, and residencies including the 2019 Villa Romana Prize, the Joan Mitchell Painting and Sculpture Award, Pollock Krasner Award, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) National Security Project Artist-in-Residence, Melon Visiting Artist Fellowship, the Berlin Artist Grant and the 2021 Hans and Lea Grundig Prize.
Dinh Q. Lê (b. 1968, Ha Tien, Vietnam) was born in a Vietnamese town near the Cambodia border. Soon after the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia in 1978, the Lê family immigrated to Los Angeles. After receiving a BFA from UC Santa Barbara, Lê began his first photo-weavings using a traditional technique he learned from his aunt. Lê participated in the 2013 Carnegie International at the Carnegie Museum of Art, PA; the 2009 Biennale Cuveê in Linz, Austria; the 2008 Singapore Biennale; and the 2006 Asia-Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, in Brisbane, Australia. His work has been exhibited at major institutions and international exhibitions including the Museum of Modern Art, NY; Carnegie Museum, PA; MoMA PS1, NY; the Museum of Contemporary Art, IL; The Museum of Fine Arts, TX; Tufts University Art Gallery, MA; and the Asia Society, NY, among many others. In 2010, he was awarded the Prince Claus Award for his outstanding contribution to cultural exchange. Lê co-founded Sàn Art, an independent exhibition space with curatorial and artist residency programs in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. He has been represented by P·P·O·W since 1998 and presented seven solo exhibitions with the gallery. He lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Daniel T. Gaitor-Lomack (b. 1988, Neptune, NJ) is a multidisciplinary artist living and working between New Haven, New York City, and Los Angeles. Gaitor-Lomack’s practice involves a tireless triangulation between material, space, and his own body, propelled by a spiritual will to express and create light. His work has been exhibited at James Cohan Gallery, New York, NY; Jeffrey Deitch, Los Angeles, CA; Night Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Alyssa Davis Gallery, New York, NY; LAXART, Los Angeles, CA (curated by Hamza Walker & Catherine Taft); Torrance Art Museum, Torrance, CA; BBQLA, Los Angeles, CA; Maple St. Construct, Omaha, NE; and many others. Gaitor-Lomack is a current artist-in-residence at NXTHVN, New Haven, US.
Carlos Motta (b. 1978, Bogotá, Colombia) received his MFA from Bard College and completed the Whitney Independent Study Program in 2006. He has received grants from Art Matters (2008); NYSCA (2010); the Creative Capital Foundation (2012); and the Kindle Project (2012). His work was the subject of survey exhibitions including Carlos Motta: Formas de libertad at the Museo de Arte Moderno de Medellín, Colombia (2017) which traveled to Matucana 100, Santiago, Chile (2018) and Carlos Motta: For Democracy There Must Be Love, Röda Sten Konsthall, Gothenburg, Sweden (2015). His work is in the permanent collections of the Guggenheim Museum; the Metropolitan Museum of Art; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Barcelona; and Museo de Arte de Banco de la República, Bogotá, among others. In 2019, Motta was appointed tenure-track Associate Professor of Interdisciplinary Practice at Pratt Institute’s Fine Arts Department. Carlos Motta: History’s Backrooms, a 20-year career monograph, was published by SKIRA in June 2020.
Carlos Reyes (b. 1977, Chicago, IL) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York and Caguas, Puerto Rico. Reyes has been featured in institutional exhibitions at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Futura Center for Contemporary Art, Prague; the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale; Hessel Museum of Art, Annandale-on-Hudson; ArkDes Museum, Stockholm; X Bienal de Nicaragua, Managua; and Centre Pompidou, Paris. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Waldo, Lincolnville, ME; Bodega, New York; Galerie Joseph Tang, Paris; and White Flag Projects, St. Louis. He has also presented work at Société, Berlin; Tanya Leighton, Berlin; Bortolami, New York and Luxembourg and Dayan, New York.
Dread Scott (b. 1965, Chicago, IL) makes revolutionary art to propel history forward. His work is exhibited across the US and internationally. In 1989, his art became the center of national controversy over its transgressive use of the American flag, while he was a student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Scott became part of a landmark Supreme Court case when he and others defied the new law by burning flags on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. He has presented at TED Talks on this. Scott’s studio is now based in Brooklyn. His work has been included in exhibitions at MoMA PS1, the Walker Art Center, Jack Shainman Gallery, and Gallery MOMO in Cape Town, South Africa, and is in the collection of the Whitney Museum and the Brooklyn Museum. His performances have been presented at BAM and on the streets of Harlem, NY. He is a 2021 John Simon Guggenheim Fellow and has also received grants and fellowships from Open Society Foundations and Creative Capital Foundation. In 2019, he presented Slave Rebellion Reenactment, a community-engaged project that reenacted the largest rebellion of enslaved people in US history. The project was featured in Vanity Fair, The New York Times, Christiane Amanpour on CNN and highlighted by Artnet News as one of the most important artworks of the decade. Performance stills and the flags from this project will be on view for the first time in New York in a solo exhibition at Cristin Tierney Gallery, September 17 – December 18, 2021.
Astrid Terrazas (b.1996, Ciudad Juárez, Mexica) is a Mexican-American artist living in Ridgewood, Queens. Taking the form of painting, illustrated ceramic vessels, and mixed media sculpture, Terrazas re-writes worlds; her narratives reflect ancestral folklore, lived experiences, and unearthly transfigurations. Terrazas received her BFA in Illustration from Pratt institute in 2018. She has exhibited work at Y2K Group, New York, NY; Andrea Festa Fine Art, Rome, Italy; Campeche, CDMX, Mexico; Real Pain, New York, NY; Marinaro, New York NY; Fort Makers, New York, NY; Gern en Regalia, New York, NY; Front Gallery, Houston, TX; Astrid Terrazas has recently been featured in articles in the Art Newspaper and the Brooklyn Rail.
Chiffon Thomas (b. 1991, Chicago, IL) holds an MFA from Yale University and a BFA from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. They have completed prominent residencies with the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, ME and the Fountainhead Residency, Miami, FL. Their work is in the permanent collections of the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, FL; Pérez Art Museum, Miami, FL and the Currier Museum of Art, Manchester, NH. Thomas' work was recently featured in the group exhibition In Practice: You may go, but this will bring you back at the Sculpture Center, Long Island City, NY and a solo exhibition, Antithesis, at Kohn Gallery, Los Angeles, CA.
Faith Wilding (b. 1943, Colonia Primavera, Paraguay) emerged at the forefront of feminist art in Los Angeles during the late 1960s and 1970s. Her work has been exhibited extensively over the last five decades including the seminal survey WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, organized by Cornelia Butler, which traveled from the Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles) to the National Museum of Women (Washington DC), PS1 Contemporary Art Center (Long Island), and the Vancouver Art Gallery. Additionally, Wilding’s work has been exhibited at Reina Sofia Museum (Madrid); Centre for Contemporary Arts (Glasgow); Bronx Museum of Art (New York); The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York); the Armand Hammer Museum (Los Angeles); The Drawing Center (New York); Documenta X (Kassel); the Singapore Art Museum. Wilding was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2009 and has been the recipient of two individual media grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2014, she was awarded the prestigious Women’s Caucus for Art Lifetime Achievement Award. Her work was included in Fiber: Sculpture 1960 to Present at the ICA in Boston; her Crocheted Environment, 1972/1995, was shown in Art Textiles at The Whitworth Gallery in Manchester, England; and documentation of The Sacrifice, 1971, was featured in Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano L.A., organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Her work was recently on view at the Kestner Gesellschaft (Hanover) for the exhibition Where Art Might Happen: The Early Years of CalArts curated by Philip Kaiser and Christina Végh, travelling to Kunsthaus (Graz).