Winter Spotlight: Visionary Edge
1 Dec 2016 — 7 Jan 2019 at the Cavin Morris Gallery in New York, United States
Cavin-Morris Gallery is pleased to present our Winter Spotlight: Visionary Edge featuring six artists we represent: Angkasapura from Java, Bessie Harvey from Tennessee, Kevin Sampson from New Jersey, Christine Sefolosha from Switzerland, Solange Knopf from Belgium, and Sylvain and Ghyslaine Staëlens from France. There is fierce grassroots spirituality in this group illustrating the central interests of the gallery: a strong visionary edge and a hardcore way of manifesting it.
Angkasapura draws animistic figures with a lush, obsessive complexity stemming from the densities of his native folkways as well as from his perceptions of street and Javanese urban culture. His work has recently been accepted by Musee de L’Art Brut in Lausanne, Switzerland, and will be included in an upcoming exhibition of new artists.
Bessie Harvey is one of the grand, old masters of vernacular African American art. Her work was first shown in the mid 80’s at Cavin-Morris Gallery. She works in the tradition of root sculpture portraying the spirits implicit in the old Conjure religion. She was included in the 1994 Whitney Biennial organized by curator Klaus Kertess. We have been fortunate enough to find some wonderful unexhibited works for this presentation.
Kevin Sampson has been with Cavin-Morris Gallery since the early 1990’s. His work continues to incorporate African American local histories, social awareness, and spirit yard imagery in a style inimitably his own. He has recently returned from a Joan Mitchell residency in New Orleans.
Christine Sefolosha is a painter of oneiric universes. The figures in her paintings move in mysterious narratives that seem to merge the mythical spaces of various cultures and epochs. Her work is immediately recognizable, and she is one of the few painters in the field working in small to large formats.
Solange Knopf also draws from the realms of dream, encapsulating a wide range of magic, decadence, spirits, pleasure and pain, and enlightenment. Knopf presents her work like Sefolosha, it has no time frame, it moves through history and lore in a personalized way making her particularly unique in the field.
Sylvain and Ghyslaine Staëlens make brooding sculptures that connect spiritual guardians with figures from witchlore, gypsylore, and traces of the medieval Black Virgin. All their sculptures are conceived and born with the materials they find in the Nature around their farmlands, forests, and volcanic mountains of rural France. Like all the other artists in this exhibition their work resounds in a timeless place.