For the ninth year, ATHICA features the work of early career area artists. EMERGES IX is curated by Brooke Leeton with assistance from Claire Dempster. Opening Thursday, June 16 from 7-9 pm, the exhibition runs through July 16, 2016.

Featuring the work of:

Michael Benedetti
Reid Brechner
Patrick Brien
Ally Burnett
Arron Foster
Ben Lock
Ariel Lockshaw
Katherine Miller
Alexis Spina
Stephanie Sutton
Jon Vogt


Curator’s Statement
This year’s annual Emerges show takes on interpretations of what it means to emerge. The local artists included in the show created works that expose moments of transition, tensions that exist in the space between, and anticipation for what happens next.

 Some artists examine discrete parts, be it building pieces, lines, shapes, or even body parts, reassembling their chosen forms from which a unique wholeness surfaces or new revelation occurs. Katherine Miller and Alexis Spina’s intuitive and site-specific arrangement of discarded tools and the results of industrial manufacturing explore what remains after abandonment and the shifting nature of architectural space. Michael Benedetti breaks shapes down to their most simple, yet abstract form, simultaneously creating distance between object and idea while highlighting underlying form. Ben Lock’s handmade sculptures emulate the machine made, the individual pieces available for arrangement in an endless number of configurations. Ally Burnett’s eerie video captivates with its nearly imperceptible zoom, as brightly colored chunks of hair dry on a red blanket, slowly revealing the grotesque, residual particles of the human body.

So too, emergence suggests the play of opposing forces, or evince a resolution yet to be determined. Patrick Brien’s painting Remoteness as the Failure of Distance Traveled delineates the ruins of Machu Picchu, modeled after a Google Maps image of the site. The technological interruption of the physical world bears out on the surface, as the colorful and monochrome, and the recognizable and abstract, clash on canvas.  Jon Vogt’s screenprint collages negotiate the space between stillness and movement, beautifully colored lines working in layered tandem to create the illusion of motion. Ariel Lockshaw’s Umbrella Dwellers asserts a co-mingling of nature and the synthetic, as the loosely rendered trees hover among the seemingly industrial landscape comprised of telephone wires and a corporate office. Reid Brechner’s painting Err exposes the friction between light and dark. The black left side of the painting abuts the lighter blue, opposites locked in a standoff on the heavily textured surface of the work. Stephanie Sutton’s photograph (How To Measure a Mountain) Pink reveals the ambiguous appearance of morning and evening, the manipulated color of the sky forcing viewers to ask if the image is one of dawn or dusk: is the day about to begin or end?

Sutton’s work also explores the apprehension that accompanies instances when we are on a precipice, or on the verge of the next step. Her photograph (How To Measure a Mountain) VIP presents viewers with a moment pregnant with possibility, as the mound of landscape materials being lit in the otherwise dark print prepares for its close-up. Likewise, Miller’s delicate envelope Forgetting evokes a feeling of expectation, or perpetual longing for it to be opened. Finally, Arron Foster’s animated shapes morph on a continuous loop, suspending viewers in a moment of anticipation as each form gives birth to a new one.

In the end, the common denominator shared by the work in this year’s Emerges show is the very idea of emergence: to transform, to conflict, to await.