Jenny Buffington & Jessica Harvey: this is the place
@ Heaven Gallery
1550 N. Milwaukee Ave. 2nd floor, Chicago IL
Opening Friday, March 18th, from 7PM - 11PM
On view through Sunday, May 8th
For this is the place, Jenny Buffington and Jessica Harvey explore mysterious geographies with sculpture, installation, and photography. Using artifacts and layers of artifice, these landscapes are deconstructed and re-examined, projecting a human element in environments void of people. Both artists implore the viewer to question what is ‘real’ in nature, accentuating the unattainable feat of re-creating these natural monuments and environments. These photographs and sculptures are the tipping point in the search for something greater.
Artist Statements /Bios
Within Jenny Buffington’s practice, she is examining humanity’s complex relationship with nature: how we project ourselves onto it, see images in it, search for the best view point, attempt to enhance it, and attempt to conquer it. It questions how we relate our bodies to nature and how our sense of self is altered in or by nature. She is seeking to address time, space, and the human condition; simultaneously using the environment as a metaphor for the self and as a method for escapism. These current sculptures reference geological formations that investigate material, color, texture, scale, and shape. This work questions how these formal aspects can be a relation to the canon of sculpture while still examining the topic of how we see and perceive our environment.
Jenny Buffington is an artist based in Chicago. She received her MFA from Tyler School of Art in 2008, and a BFA from Herron School of Art in 2005. She was a full fellow at Vermont Studio Center in Burlington, VT and an Artist in Residence at CAC Woodside in Troy, NY. Buffington was awarded a public commission for Pogues Run Park in Indianapolis and has exhibited at Crane Arts, PA; Temple Gallery, PA; Flux Space, PA; and the VCU FAB Gallery, VA.
Jessica Harvey is a Chicago-based artist who explores the myths we create for ourselves andnature while trying to preserve a more desired history. Digging through public and private archives, she conducts long-term investigations on historical and personal events based on “facts,” reinterpreting these stories through the use of photography, video, archival resources, and objects constructed from everyday materials. The images and installations act as a catalyst for a fantastical exploration of the psychology that one attaches to memory and place, In this particular body of work Harvey uses the Sangre de Cristo Range of the Rocky Mountains
as a backdrop to the UFO Watchtower in Hooper Colorado, turning the lens onto fragments of one woman’s search for something greater. This Colorado site was built atop two vortexes in the mystical San Luis Valley, where people look to the mountains and skies above for answers.
Jessica Harvey received an MFA in photography from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2009 and a BA in film and video from Columbia College in 2005. She was awarded a Fulbright Grant to Iceland for the 2011-2012 year. She has attended residencies at ACRE, Anderson Ranch, Byrdcliffe Arts Colony, Hardesty Arts Center, The Luminary, and Vermont Studio Center. She has participated in group shows at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Art (Grand Rapids, MI), Johalla Projects (Chicago, IL), The Center for Contemporary Photography (Detroit, MI), and the Cranbrook Art Museum (Bloomfield Hills, MI). Recent solo and two person exhibitions include shows at Black Hills State University (Spearfish, SD), Hardesty Arts Center (Tulsa, OK), ACRE Projects (Chicago, IL), Good Weather (North Little Rock, AR), and The Luminary (St. Louis, MO).
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