PARDON OUR APPEARANCE!
AT AS OF NOW GALLERY
An exhibition by Eridan
with curated work from
michelle Hernandez Vega
As of Now is a new gallery space aiming to support and congeal the vibrant community of young artists in New York City by providing an experimental platform for emerging artists to curate and present their work in collaboration with others. In this spirit, As of Now is pleased to present its inaugural show: “Pardon Our Appearance!” comprising the latest body of sculptural work by collaborative duo Eridan (Eri King and Daniel Greer) exhibited alongside curated artwork by 6 New York based artists.
This exhibition was conceived as a response to the location and condition of the gallery as it exists at present; that is to say in a basement under the construction site of a soon to be farm-to-bodega storefront in the heart of one of Brooklyn’s most gentrified neighborhoods. The process of gentrification is by no means a new event, but simply a repeating cycle, a phenomenon of capitalism that has no beginning or end, like a force of nature. At this point, the cycle has regenerated so many times in New York City that anyone outside of the upper class is priced out of living in the city. In its place is a void, a vacuum of culture and a homogenization of life for its new inhabitants. Ironically, it’s only after the artists are pushed out of a neighborhood that art galleries sprout up in their place. In this light, securing the time and space to live and work is probably the biggest challenge posed to young artists in NYC. Eridan utilized this context as the catalyst to create a community garden blooming from a humble recess in Brooklyn Heights.
The materials that make up these enlarged arrangements are sourced from 99 cent stores and hardware stores if not the sidewalk itself. They are working class in nature and instilled with the optimism of creating something from nothing, similar to the abundance of potential energy present in a construction site. The arrangements are influenced by ikebana (the Japanese art of flower arrangement) and the Japanese concept of “wabi-sabi” or the art of the imperfect and incomplete. Both of these influences promote the perception of a sublime beauty in the naturalness of things. In this light it is precisely that which we traditionally refer to as ugly, the scaffolding of life, that allows us to directly perceive the universal constant of change. These forces of nature have been represented directly or artificially within the gallery by the 6 artists curated, mingling within and around the flower arrangements. Christopher Roberson’s “May (Double Humidifier)” greets the visitor upon entrance, providing a gentle mist to purify one from the dust of the world. Andy Ralph’s “Back Bone Totem” alludes to an artificial nectar that nourishes and sustains it’s ecosystem. Kyoko Hamaguchi’s “Space Watcher” relies on an abundance of time and light to create the final fruit of a photograph. Hannah Beerman’s “Brussel Sprouts Seen at Lisa’s” presents the delicate balance of an ecosystem amidst its lifecycle. Justin Cloud’s “Cloudbursts” hang in limbo, a reminder of a human presence both past and future. While Michelle Hernandez Vega’s “Carrying” integrates the all-essential earth that supports and bears witness to our presence. Within this balanced ecosystem Eridan’s flower arrangements emerge from these forces. Since a flower arrangement is only as important as it’s vessel, As of Now Gallery provides the void of space for all this to exist in an ephemeral state.
While this show and this gallery is here right now, it won’t be forever, and it’s this awareness of time and our place within it that makes the present moment so impactful. It’s the transient nature of existence that makes New York City what it is and why we love it and hate it in the same way. Nature and Capitalism are both extremely competitive within themselves, but they also can’t function without teamwork. Though we appear and grow individually, we all rely on the same root system to live and thrive. Eridan’s foundations are cemented in collaboration and we truly believe Art is a team sport. With this exhibition we hope to provide a contemplative space that allows its inhabitants to cast away all earthly mire and experience a sense of harmony and tranquility between the natural and artificial in this eternal now.