Apr 28th 2017

Jean Alexander Frater: Softer and Gregory Bae: Spinning Backflip

@ The Mission

1431 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60642

Opening Friday, April 28th, from 6PM - 8PM

On view through Saturday, June 10th

THE MISSION is excited to announce Softer, an exhibition of recent paintings by Jean Alexander Frater. An opening reception will be held on Friday, April 28 from 6:00 to 8:00pm. The exhibition will be on view through Saturday, June 10, 2017.

Alexander Frater investigates the materiality of painting and how its physical properties interact with its environment. Recontextualizing the roles that stretcher bars, paint and canvas play in painting, Alexander Frater allows the materials to visibly resist, or comply to, manipulation. Her canvases are folded, cut and pleated around its supports—in some instances, revealing the architectural framework. Where she creates black dripped lines across bright canvases in her previous work, Alexander Frater fashions more indirect contrasts within her subdued, undulating canvases in Softer. In her first solo exhibition at the gallery, Alexander Frater showcases paintings that reveal her proclivity to elude the confines and limitations of painting.

“Alexander Frater’s folds break the fictitious barrier between two and three dimensions by expanding the surface plane’s volume. Rather than choosing to go “large” and colonize more visual space by increasing the outer dimensions of her works, Alexander Frater goes “soft”, manipulating excess surface volume as both a sculptural and painterly material. Her folds disrupt the smoothness, regularity and rectilinearity of the picture plane, playfully transforming hard-edged stripes into ripples…and turning the geometrically bounded lavender, blue, and green color field painting ‘Green to Blue Rippled Folds’ into a slyly analog form of glitch art. Folds also allow Alexander Frater to draw lines in space (or in her case, to pinch them into existence) without any implements at all—indeed, without using any material other than surface itself.”

— Claudine Isé, Freeark Gallery Director, Riverside Arts Center

JEAN ALEXANDER FRATER (b. 1972) received her BA in Philosophy from University of Dayton and her MFA from School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Alexander Frater has recently been included in group exhibition at The Franklin (Chicago, IL), Stark, Main Hall Gallery at Kent State University (Canton, OH), Transmitter (Brooklyn, NY), Chicago Artists Coalition (Chicago, IL), Wexner Center for the Arts (Columbus, OH), Rockford Art Museum (Rockford, IL), among others. She has recently exhibited solo exhibitions at Guest Spot @ The Reinstitute (Baltimore, MD) and SpaceCamp Micro Gallery (Indianapolis, IN). Alexander Frater was included in a group exhibition, Plane Figures, at THE MISSION. This is her first solo show at the gallery. Alexander Frater lives and works in Chicago, IL.


THE SUB-MISSION is pleased to present Spinning Backflip, an installation by Gregory Bae. An opening reception will be held on Friday, April 28th from 6:00 to 8:00pm. The exhibition will be on view through June 10, 2017.

From his own observations and personal encounters, Bae speculates about the fundamental forces of natural phenomena. His family’s immigration from South Korea along with his curiosity—even frustration—with forces that are greater than humankind, spur Bae’s meditation on planetary scale and movement. Derived from his perplexity, Spinning Backflip pairs displacement with connection. Seeing displacement as a conceptual dopplegänger of abstraction, Bae presents disoriented wall sculptures of armchairs and couches inspired by a childhood anecdote alongside re-oriented videos of the sun rising and setting.

As a child, Bae became aware that his family was from the other side of the planet, a fact that curiously mystified his own roots. Conversely, his Western-centric education and knowledge of the earth’s roundness made the world very physical and tangible and conjured the idea that people from his family’s native country were all living upside down. During a recent trip to Seoul, Bae observed the sun rise during an early morning, jet-lagged walk. As the sun rose, he wondered if the sun might be setting at the same moment in parts of the United States—perhaps he knew someone watching the (upside down) sun from the opposite side of the world.
Bae’s video (One Coinciding Moment Felt in Rotation 10.31.14 Seoul/10.30.14 New York City) displays the simultaneous, but seemingly separate, occurrences of the sun rising in Seoul and setting in New York. By virtue of observing the same view—albeit different angles—Bae emboldens the notion that days perfectly dovetail, encouraging the viewer to forgo constructs of exoticism and other brands of marginalization. Pairing the disoriented with the re-oriented, Bae creates an incongruous, yet captivating environment in THE SUB-MISSION.

GREGORY BAE received his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and his BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. He has had recent solo exhibitions at FL Gallery in Milan, the Chicago Urban Art Society in Chicago, and Opsis Art in Seoul. He has recently participated in group exhibitions with Triumph in Chicago, Shane Campbell Gallery in Chicago, Bellwether organized by the Cleveland Museum of Art and MOCA Cleveland, and the Seoul Museum of Art Nanji Exhibition Halls. Bae is a recipient of grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, the City of Chicago DCASE Individual Artist Program, and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts in New York. He has upcoming exhibitions at UNISEX Salon in Brooklyn and Usable Space in Milwaukee and will attend the Fountainhead Residency in Miami. He is represented by FL Gallery in Milan and Harrison in New York City. He lives and works in Chicago.

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