Something’s Come Between Us at Songs for Presidents

Artists: Hanna Umin, Rindon Johnson, Victoria Haynes, Jes Fan, Sessa Englund

Exhibition title: Something’s Come Between Us

Curated by: Sessa Englund

Venue: Songs for Presidents, New York, US

Date: October 14 – November 12, 2017

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Songs for Presidents, New York

“This quasi-object is not an object, but it is one nevertheless, since it is not a subject, since it is in the world; it is also a quasi-subject, since it marks or designates a subject who, without it, would not be a subject.”
– Michel Serres

Songs for Presidents is pleased to present Something’s Come Between Us, curated by Sessa Englund, opening the fourth season in our space at 1673 Gates. Something’s Come Between Us explores the theory of the quasi-object as put forward by Michel Serres as it relates to passive objects, vulnerability and aggression, through the works of Rindon Johnson, Jes Fan, Victoria Haynes, Hanna Umin and Sessa Englund. Vulnerability is something that not everyone is afforded. It’s something to be measured, protected, and deployed; it is something that can be superimposed, consented to, and also used as a defense. The objects we create and employ to lengthen the distance between our bodies and our vulnerability allows for more breathing room; they allow us to control this distance, to deflect it, reposition it or beckon it closer. The object as a revealing trait of its sculptor, as an indicator of the identity of the artist, or as evidence of lived experiences or of hidden depths, resonates with Serres’ proposal.

Hanna Umin (BA from Camberwell College of Arts at University of the Arts London, 2013) has a preoccupation with misanthropy, isolation, and tragedy. Umin’s work, bringing together cast and found objects, assembles structures whose obsessive, irregular detail is placed at odds with the thematic contents of their titles. Past shows include “Show Home” at Safehouse in London, “Unkempt” at the Pornhub Film Festival in Brooklyn, and “Mask” at Geddes Gallery in London. Umin is currently completing her residency at Franconia Sculpture Park in Minnesota.

Rindon Johnson (1990, San Francisco, United States, BFA from Tisch School of the Arts, 2012) makes sculptures, videos, paintings, photos, poems and drawings. Johnson wants to amplify the astonishment of the spectator by creating compositions or settings that generate tranquil poetic images that leave traces and balance on the edge of recognition and alienation. Past solo shows include “Astral Oil, Global Family”, curated by Sorry Archive at The Java Project in New York, “A Din, A Hand” at Beacon in Sacramento, California and “Existential Hangover – The Guest Room IRL” at The Museum of Human Achievement in Austin, Texas.

Victoria Haynes (BFA RISD 2015) is interested in weather and economics. She works in several media including wood, bronze, and oil painting, and enjoys taking the position of an apprentice to master-craftspersons wherever possible. Past shows include “It Never Rains in the Capitol”, Ginny Projects, UK; “A First Line of Defense for Significant Tree” at 875 Park Ave, Brooklyn; “Peter Peter”, 103 E 75th St NY NY; “Thank You For Being a Friend,” 18th st Art Center Santa Monica, CA; “Henry Bunyan Appleseed,” Art Market Provincetown, Provincetown MA. She has written for 15 Orient gallery as well as for “Natasha” Issue 2.

Jes Fan (BFA in Glass, from Rhode Island School of Design, 2014) warps perceived roles and the aesthetics of mundane objects in their work to create space for marginalized identities and conversations. Past solo and group shows include “No Clearance in Niche” at Museum of Arts and Design (MAD), “Disposed to Add” at Vox Populi Gallery in Philadelphia, and ”Set on Freedom” by Partnership Gallery at the Queens Museum NYC. Fan recently completed their Artist in Residence program at Pioneer Works, NYC. jesfan.com

Sessa Englund (BFA from School of Art+Design, SUNY Purchase, 2013) draws objects from personal experience to create menacing yet seductive sculptural work. Utilizing the initial lead of autobiographical experience, Englund taps into and activates the innate socio-political framework of material. Past shows include “Changelings” at the Flying Dutchman Gallery in London, “AADK Residents Showcase 2017” at AADK in Blanca Spain, “Face Huggers” at BRETHREN in Queens NY, “Bodacioussss” at The Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver Colorado, and ”Publish or Perish” at Transmitter Gallery in Brooklyn NY. sessa.website

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Sessa Englund, Bloom Series 3, 2017, Marzipan, cast iron, ball-chain, black lacker

Sessa Englund, Bloom Series 3, 2017, Marzipan, cast iron, ball-chain, black lacker

Sessa Englund, Bloom Series 3, 2017, Marzipan, cast iron, ball-chain, black lacker

Sessa Englund, Troll, 2017, Salt, metal, flour, acrylic paint, dried organic material, latex

Sessa Englund, Troll, 2017, Salt, metal, flour, acrylic paint, dried organic material, latex

Sessa Englund, Troll, 2017, Salt, metal, flour, acrylic paint, dried organic material, latex

Sessa Englund, Troll, 2017, Salt, metal, flour, acrylic paint, dried organic material, latex

Hanna Umin, Snakes, 2017, Cast hydrocal, painted (acrylics, polycrylic varnish, oils and wax medium) and gilt. Sculpey, wire, rubber bungees, zip ties, pubic hair

Hanna Umin, Snakes, 2017, Cast hydrocal, painted (acrylics, polycrylic varnish, oils and wax medium) and gilt. Sculpey, wire, rubber bungees, zip ties, pubic hair

Hanna Umin, Before the Golden Net, 2017, Oil on black board, cast hydrocal, wire, twine, sculptamold, house paint, fringe, green nail

Hanna Umin, Before the Golden Net, 2017, Oil on black board, cast hydrocal, wire, twine, sculptamold, house paint, fringe, green nail

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Rindon Johnson, Zaun, 2017, Leather, Vaseline, UV lamp

Rindon Johnson, Zaun, 2017, Leather, Vaseline, UV lamp

Victoria Haynes, Raise roof ‘gainst gloom’s beams, carpenters!, 2017, Mixed media

Victoria Haynes, Raise roof ‘gainst gloom’s beams, carpenters!, 2017, Mixed media

Victoria Haynes, Raise roof ‘gainst gloom’s beams, carpenters!, 2017, Mixed media

Victoria Haynes, Raise roof ‘gainst gloom’s beams, carpenters!, 2017, Mixed media

Victoria Haynes, Raise roof ‘gainst gloom’s beams, carpenters!, 2017, Mixed media

Something’s Come Between Us, 2017, exhibition view, Songs for Presidents, New York

Victoria Haynes, Alone’, for E. A. Poe, 2017, Drawing in mixed media frame with silvering

Victoria Haynes, Alone’, for E. A. Poe, 2017, Drawing in mixed media frame with silvering

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