Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November 16th ARTLab: Every-Body Draws

What does it mean to be connected to your own body?  How can you use your body in unconventional ways to create art?

November 16th ARTLab: Every-Body Draws is inspired by Janine Antoni’s solo show Within, located in our 1414 Monterey Street galleries.

Antoni's artistic process is rooted in performance and gesture.  She describes her work as an exploration of what it means to be a woman and what it means to have a body.  Antoni’s show is an invitation for us, as the viewer, to connect to our own bodies and explore the interconnectedness of all things.

Janine Antoni, Graft, 2013

The resin objects on the second floor at 1414 Monterey Street were inspired by milagros, folk charms that are used for healing purposes.  In Mexico they are often in the form of tiny metal medallions representing different body parts like a leg, heart, hand, or eyes. In Spain, Portugal, and Brazil, they are often 3-dimensional wax or resin. For Antoni, the “act of making [a milagro] is a kind of prayer, a kind of intention.” Like creating a milagro, the way she approaches her work can be seen as a personal contemplation of her body. A crossed leg over a leg bone is one of the several resin milagro-inspired objects in Graft that contemplates femininity. The gesture of dragging female hip bones across wet plaster is what shaped the crown molding in Crowned as well as the clay vessels representing her artistic mothers in Gertrude, Mary, and Martha. The gesture of cutting a tree in half and piercing the trunk through the ceiling is a gesture connecting the tree--the source of the materials used to construct the building itself--as a metaphor pointing to the interconnectedness of all things to a source, just as we are connected to our flesh, our bones, and to others through the act of birth.

Janine Antoni, Crowned, 2013

In our upcoming ARTLab, visitors will discover that a gesture, a movement, or even an intention can be a process for creating art. In this installation activity, participants will experiment using branches as extensions of their body to move and create a collaborative drawing. Participants will also create their own milagros expressing thanks, making a wish for someone’s wellbeing, or happiness for themselves or others.  We will hang these handmade milagros in the garden when they are completed.

ARTLab is free with museum admission and is open to all ages.

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