The exhibition presents 14 artists from New York and artworks in a variety of media; painting, sculpture, drawing, stitching, and printed media. The show's title refers to the lo-fi pop anthem, "I Am A Scientist," by the band Guided By Voices. A song about self-examination, wandering existentialism, questioning and embrace of the self, and a type of romantic questing that searches for and buts up against the notion of ourselves as 'lost souls'.
Staring at the computer screen you hear the ticking clock, a flicker of shadows, in your vision an imprint, markings on the wall resemble cave paintings, there is an image of the face, a human hand, an insomniac, scientific drawings, a skull, bats and flies. Entering wandering landscapes, with stitched forms - boats adrift at sea, flags and fists are raised in defiance of the ocean void - a sensitive cloud watcher, forms coming and going.
Eric Palgon's small slippages between figure and ground, invite a sensitivity akin to cloud watching. Tony Cox's meta-physical stitches become fetishized forms. Amy Gartrell invites us to enter Plato's cave through the nostrils of a horizontal nose sculpture. Sadie Laska's incidental marked and hand smeared paintings are reminiscent of the cave wall. Lucky DeBellevue's clocks are frozen in mid motion. It is all summed up in Agathe Snow's female breast plug, which is giving form to a common need for an entrance to a black hole/suck hole in life.
In I Am A Scientist art's material strangeness and its visceral erotics are raised to a visuality, a language closure within the allegory of Plato's Cave, where the flickering light becomes man's way to try and mark time. The human hand, its mark, becomes motifs of nature, emotive wandering landscapes.
Art should not be separated from the social spheres; the contributing artists are a current generation of New Yorkers, friends, collaborators, personal connections or some Laska has shared studio with. They are all informed by music, pop culture, mass media, and politics. I Am A Scientist is a complex representation of institutional, social, and personal values.
Sadie Laska (born 1974, West Virginia, US) lives and works in New York as an independent curator, musician and visual artist. She holds a MFA from Bard College (2014) and a BFA from West Virgina University (1992). In 2017 Laska curated the critically acclaimed show Animal Farm at Brant Foundation, Greenwich. She has been shown internationally with Canada, New York, Office Baroque, Brussels, KS Art, New York, and Galerie Bernard Ceysson, Paris, Luxemburg and Geneva. Laska makes up half the drum-centric duo I.U.D. (along with friend and fellow BFA student Lizzi Bougatsos), who has been performing at international venues including Whitney Museum, PS1 Contemporary Art Center, and Kunsthalle Zürich.