Dec 4th 2010

Isolated Fictions

@ Green Lantern Gallery

2542 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Opening Saturday, December 4th, from 7PM - 10PM

On view through Saturday, January 8th

In 1821 a fleet of English ships set sail for the Northwest Passage, the golden fleece of shipping routes. Of course, they did not find it. They did, however, get trapped in the ice for nine months. When Captain William Parry recognized they were stuck, he had the crew cover the ships’ masts in tents of canvas. He also pulled out a trunk of costumes and ordered they set up a theater. As the sun set for winter’s entirety, Parry made a proclamation. His crew of salty explorers would produce plays on a weekly basis; they would also print a newspaper: the entries of which were solicited from men on deck, under the condition that nothing depressing be published. That newspaper, along with reviews of those plays, curious poems and classifieds was republished by The Green Lantern Press in 2009, the same year the Northwest Passage opened up for the first time in history.

Using this book as it’s center, Isolated Fictions, features Deb Sokolow, Carmen Price, Jason Dunda, Amanda Browder, Nadine Nakanishi, Rebecca Mir and Nick Butcher. Together their work points to the difficulty of communication, a difficulty that, as in these instances, can become its own creative monument. Whether Dunda’s painting of impossible wooden towers, Browder’s plush iceberg, Butcher’s wood-glue record or Sokolow’s second-person fear of scurvy, each work marks the simultaneous effort of expression and it’s failing. Nakanishi incorporates intuit mapping techniques, as Mir recreates an ice floe and Price offers what at first appears to be a literal landscape. These objects offer a compelling interior logic that nevertheless falls apart when compared to literal expectations. Despite the confounding number of deaths in the history of Arctic expedition, only one member of Parry’s crew died. It was the most successful expedition of his time. Isolated Fictions investigates history to recognize what it was that kept Parry’s crew alive.

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