Soft Power. Hard Margins.
Opening May 21, 2021
“…the right to freedom of expression is a permission, granted by the state, to engage in certain activities. But not everything that is permitted is required, nor can everything that is permitted be justified.“
– Adrian Piper. Power Relations Within Existing Art Institutions (1983). Out of Order, Out of Sight. Vol. II
table is pleased to announce its first show of the 2021/2022 season Soft Power. Hard Margins., an exhibition of new work by Chicago-based artist Nyeema Morgan. This is the artist’s first solo show in Chicago.
Soft Power. Hard Margins. consists of 35 sculptures — ersatz, neoclassical frames, partially gilded, sculpted and cast in resin as multiples. The work is displayed salon style throughout the space, suggesting a hierarchy through their varying sizes. Each of Morgan’s sculptures are internally illuminated, framing a canonical work of art obscured through a haze of frosted plexiglass. Areas of the seminal works are minimally discernible through text cut out of the prophylactic surface— each text asserting a unique permission granted.
By studying a ‘great’ work of art’s contemporary, cultural significance, Morgan catalogs a permission each work gives as a signifier for human desire and will in the 21st century, while raising questions about legacy and inheritance. Morgan asserts that this permission— context specific and subtly shifting translation— supersedes universal meaning and the artist’s intention. It is the expressive ‘permission’ that the work gives — its social function within a particular politicized framework.
Morgan’s solo and two person exhibitions include The Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Boulder, CO; Marlborough Contemporary, NYC, NY; Grant Wahlquist Gallery, Portland, ME; The Bindery Projects, St Paul, MN as well as group exhibitions at The Drawing Center, NYC, NY; The Studio Museum in Harlem, NYC, NY; CSS Bard Gallery, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY; Galerie Jean Roche Dard, Paris, France and the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, ME. Awards and residencies include a Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant, an Art Matters grant, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. She earned her BFA from the Cooper Union School of Art and an MFA from California College of the Arts.
This project was supported, in part, by a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant.
To register for the event, follow this link: https://signup.com/client/invitation2/secure/10576118300115/true#/invitation