- Liz Publika
Event Spotlight: The INNOVATE exhibit featuring more than 40 artists on view at the Untitled Space
Life, over the past year, has been different from what most of us have experienced to date. Much of what used to be normal — like entertainment, recreation, and human interaction — suddenly became less so, and people had to find ways to adapt. Both individuals and industry were impacted, but the arts, which often require the human factor to thrive, was perhaps one of the sectors that bore the brunt of it. And creatives of all types had to get a lot more resourceful.
The Innovate exhibit, a group show curated by Indira Cesarine and presented by the Untitled Space, features works created by more than 40 international contemporary artists who spent the last year working on their art in a wide variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, photography, collage, fiber art, wearable art, performance art, digital art, audio art, and art using Augmented Reality. The culmination of their efforts is on view at the gallery from September 12th through October 2nd, 2021.
Because of the limitations put forth by global circumstances, many of the artists had to re-evaluate their approach to the creative processes that served them previously. As such, the exhibit is a celebration of pioneering creativity. “We are experiencing a new emphasis on digital technology, with the new frontier of NFT Art, CGI, and Augmented Reality, as well as advanced technologies of digital painting and other creative programs,” states Cesarine in her curatorial statement.
Musing on the theme of innovation, some NFT artists — like Sweden’s Andreas Wannerstedt, Canada’s Alexy Préfontaine and China’s Yuge Zhou — chose to push the boundaries of their digital works. Others — like Synchrodogs, a Ukrainian photography duo; Watson Mere, a Haitian-American artist who creates work using Microsoft Paint; and Jonathan Rosen, a Brooklyn-based interactive digital sculpture artist — created art that explores relationships between people, society, nature and technology.
Others — such as artist and photographer Guilia Grillo (aka Petite Doll), bio-futurist and wearable art designer Asher Levine, performance artist Asia Stewart, and fiber artists Cassie Arnold and Dance Doyle — used the opportunity to explore existential ideas and abstract themes like identity, beauty, the unspoken and the taboo. Of course, artists who continued to use the mediums they were using prior to the pandemic also took the chance to push the boundaries of their art, albeit in different ways.
Martha Zmpounou, Angela Santana and Junyi Liu, for example, explored the line between abstraction and representation with their incredible portraits. Similarly Ashley Chew took some time to reflect on works that were traditionally revered throughout history and reimagined them in a different light. At the end of the day though, “each of these artists has persisted in their artistic endeavors in order to bring into the world something new and inspirational for us to see, hear, and experience.”
Check out more from the artists at the Untitled Space (45 Lispenard Street NY, NY 10013) or stop by here to learn more about the artists and their works.
Alexy Préfontaine (aeforia), Alisa McRonald, Andreas Wannerstedt, Angela Santana, Arielle Tesoriero, Asher Levine, Ashley Chew, Ashley Zelinskie, Asia Stewart, Cassie Arnold, Cath Orain, Chukes, Claire Luxton, Dance Doyle, Elena Chestnykh, Fahren Feingold, Greta Brat, Giulia Grillo AKA Petite Doll, Indira Cesarine, Isabel Beckenstein AKA The Love Whip, Jacob Hicks, Joanna Grochowska, Jonathan Rosen, Julia Curran, Junyi Liu, Kelly Shami, Kirra Cheers, Laura Kimmel, Leah Schrager, Lindsay Parker, Luigi Honorat, Marlies Plank, Martha Zmpounou, Molly Dario, Roberto Grosso, Shamona Stokes, Synchrodogs, Victoria Selbach, Watson Mere, Yuge Zhou, and Zeynep Solakoglu.
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