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Embodiments

Sculpture Space NYC-Projects is proud to present, as part of its Curatorial Program series, Embodiments, featuring work by Carol Bruns, Janine Polak and Scott Verhagen, curated by Patricia Zarate and in collaboration with Sculpture Space NYC-Projects and Key Projects.

In Embodiments, the suggestion of the body or body fragments is both purposefully and subtly evoked. Working abstractly, in small and large scale sculptures made of clay, paper, and plaster, these three artists draw upon their personal histories and their memories.

Carol Bruns’ sculptures, made of paper mixed with rice paste, are shaped, modeled and built around steel stands and Styrofoam and are then coated with various patinas. She creates forms that are large yet deceptively light in weight. Her “shadow” works capture the visible and invisible aspects of unspoken views and ideas. 

Janine Polak creates porcelain sculptures that preserve a simple gesture or a presence seemingly frozen in time. She works with natural fibers that are saturated in clay slip. These are then balled up, stacked in folds or twisted. Once dried and fired, the fibers burn away to ash leaving porcelain embodiments of the original materials. 

Scott Vergahen’s small to medium size plaster sculptures are knobby masses reminiscent of bodily shapes – spinal cords, bones, teeth, etc. The pieces are worked and reworked, from structure to patinas, finally resting in a tension between mass and space.

About the artists:

Carol Bruns graduated with a Fine Art degree from New York University in 1966, then studied painting and drawing at the Art Students League in New York and Academie de La Grande Chaumiere in Paris. She first exhibited in 1975 at OK Harris, curated by Patterson Sims. Her two most recent exhibitions were in Bushwick in 2015. Over the decades, she has continued to show in New York and Atlanta, and received numerous commissions from New York architects and designers.

 Janine Polak received a BA in Studio Art and Economics from the University of Virginia in 2005 and an MFA from the Yale University School of Art, Department of Sculpture, in 2008. She currently lives and works in Queens, New York. She has exhibited throughout the US including at Essex Flowers, NYC; Brennan & Griffin, NYC; Equity Gallery, NYC; TSA New York; Scott Charmin, Houston, TX; Sardine, Brooklyn; as well as internationally in Beijing, China, and Australia.

 Scott Verhagen attended the Art Institute of Boston in 1972 for sculpture and drawing and studied at the Art Students League in New York. He has exhibited in various group exhibitions nationally including at Sculpture Center, White Columns and in Queens International 2012 at the Queens Museum. Scott lives in New York City and maintains a studio in Long Island City, Queens.

 

 Sculpture Space NYC is a ceramics and sculpture center founded by artists Magda Dejose and Andrew Kennedy. Sculpture Space NYC’s mission is to stimulate creativity, new ideas and collaboration in ceramics-based investigations. Artists, designers and craftspeople of all backgrounds converge in this center to experiment, learn, make, reflect and grow artistically. The thoughtfully designed and open floor plan allows for fluid access to equipment, sharing and advanced education.

SSNYC-Projects is a curatorial program dedicated to promoting contemporary visual art focusing on ceramics, sculpture and three-dimensional work. Based on funding and availability, Sculpture Space NYC also offers residency opportunities by invitation and on a project-by-project basis. 

Patricia Zarate is co-founder of Key Projects, an artist-run gallery space based in Long Island City, New York. Through intimate exhibits of contemporary abstract and conceptual art, Key Projects explores and showcases an international community of artists.