Reeve Schumacher’s From the bottom of a well (detail) (2009).
nota bene: Illustrated demons & allegories, stripped of one religion, culture or narrative, are cast adrift and, accordingly, find new haunts is the current exhibition at Dorsch Gallery, Miami. We choose to write about this exhibition for many reasons, but mainly because, being the first show that the gallery’s co-director Tyler Emerson-Dorsch has exclusively curated, it sets the tone for a gallery that is busy reinventing itself, and in doing so recapturing both the attention and respect of Miami’s arts community.
Since Founder Brook Dorsch shared his role as Director in June of last year with his wife Tyler Emerson-Dorsch, a noticeable energizing of the space has occurred. The impression one cannot fail to take is that Emerson-Dorsch’s background and dedication to quality programming has brought much to the gallery, however, save for a popular series of evening lectures entitled “Classroom” and her co-curation of a number of exhibitions, her curatorial style has not really been evident, until now.
(Left) Shahzia Sikander’s Naga (2007). (Right) Patricia Smith’s Garland of Questions and Answers (2008).
Continuing in the gallery’s recent (comparative to its ten year tenure) welcome trend of broadening our community’s gene pool by showcasing artists (and also curators) from outside of Miami, this group exhibition, in addition to an exhaustive press release, features work by Arlen Austin, Ernesto Caivano, Alyssa Pheobus, Shahzia Sikander, Patricia Smith, and Nora Woloszczuk of Team Team collective together with Miami residents Rene Barge and Reeve Schumacher. Concerned with collections and residual thoughts each artist’s works reflect processes of living and thinking that imbue personal effects with untold meaning. Customary yet simultaneously unapparent by virtue of their secret associations, the many elements that comprise the exhibition – and the way in which they are brought to life – beg our understanding through symbolism and their likeness to the familiar curiousness of the human mind.
(Left) Alyssa Phoebus’ Good Woman (2008). (Right) Arlen Austin’s Candy tray for the enchanced plasticity of the phallic signifier (2009).
Scholarly references in the accompanying literature and more than a smattering of academy airs about the gallery hint at an exhibition that is equal in stature to that of a museum show. A Bard alumni, Emerson-Dorsch’s credentials and apparent reverence for cohesion set an important bench mark for other Miami galleries. Comprised of beautifully conceived works from equally unfamiliar artists and an antique school desk littered with tabbed research books pertaining to the show, “note bene” (and her hard work) stands apart this month. Unfaltering in its momentum, Dorsch Gallery has successfully delivered yet another thoughtful, well compiled exhibition which, despite not being as exciting as some of the events we have covered lately gets two thumbs up for effort; unlike other galleries in Wynwood that seem to be throwing up mediocre group shows of old work from their pop favorites as though it were summer already[.]
The exhibition nota bene: Illustrated demons & allegories, stripped of one religion, culture or narrative, are cast adrift and, accordingly, find new haunts will be on view through June 2, 2009.