Cassandra Holden & Dominique Saks
May 7– May 30, 2016
Gallery Hours | Sat–Sun 12–4pm, or by appointment
Opening Reception | Saturday May 7th | 6–9pm
Rainmaker Artist Residency
2337 NW York St #201, Portland, OR 97210
In partnership with Rainmaker Artist Residency, S/PLI/T is pleased to announce Dissolved/Dismantled: a two-person exhibition featuring the work of New York-based artist Cassandra Holden, and Seattle-based artist Dominique Saks. Grounded in material through additive and subtractive methods, Dissolved/Dismantled explores a liquid and fibrous world infused with mysticism. Saks blurs distinctions between photography and printmaking while Holden works between fiber and painting – each creating entirely new processes that commune in elemental ways.
In a series of linen works, Holden counters weaving by deconstructing fabric in specific compositions. Holden makes marks on the linen’s surface with indigo dye and pulls individual threads from the fabric, creating abstract shapes and gestures on a 2-D surface. Some are reminiscent of natural phenomena like moons, while others are dyed in imperfect grids, linking “the grid” as a formal element in painting with the intrinsic grid of warp and weft in cloth. The completed pieces exist as both paintings and fiber art works – challenging conventional hierarchy of media.
Saks’ series of etched zinc intaglio-monoprints combine with cyanotype photography, navigating between abstraction and figuration. Saks uses underwater photography to capture swimmers and trees through the ocean, swimming pools, and natural springs. She converts these images into negatives and cyanotypes them onto etched monoprints that reference observational charcoal drawings and photographs of underwater seascapes in expressive mark-making. The final pieces depict enigmatic figures in a cyan world. Through submersion of subjects and methods of visual layering, Saks investigates the human female relationship to the artist, the viewer, and the natural world – refuting traditional depictions and connotations of the female body / muse in nature.
“We must come down to earth from the clouds where we live in vagueness, and experience the most real thing there is: material.” – Annie Albers Work with Material,1938
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Cassandra Holden was raised in New York City and received her BFA from the Fashion Institute of Technology in 2012. Her work has been exhibited in galleries throughout New York City, including a solo show at Gallery Sensei. She has been awarded artist residencies at The Banff Centre in Banff, Alberta, Canada and Arts Letters and Numbers in Averill Park, NY. Cassandra primarily works with soft materials that reference traditions of the past such as weaving, while examining enduring and changing societal attitudes regarding femininity. Her work explores how the tools and processes associated with textiles can be used as viable practices in contemporary art.
Dominique Saks is originally from the Big Island of Hawaii, and received her B.A. from Colorado College in 2014. In 2015 she was an Artist in Residence at the Sable Project in Stockbridge, VT. Her print work was placed in the Top 20 Graduate Print Awards for People of Print in 2014, and has been featured in a number of publications including Rootstalk Magazine, The Leviathan Quarterly, and Quality Peoples. Her work has been exhibited in Colorado, Vermont, and New York. Saks continues to blend her two passions, art and the environment, through her work as a park interpreter, environmental educator, and artist within the landscape of her Washington home.
ABOUT THE CURATORS
S/PLI/T produces two-person exhibitions in established and alternative art venues and vacant spaces. By introducing emerging artists with conceptual depth and contemporary concerns to new viewers, S/PLI/T encourages artistic practice at a critical stage while inviting the community to connect around fresh and vital work. S/PLI/T encourages accessibility and cross-disciplinary engagement through interpretive materials, interviews, public events, and a published catalog.
The name S/PLI/T describes a duality that is present in the two-person exhibitions and implies two pieces of a whole. We are interested in the dialogue that can take place in the space(split) between different art practices.
S/PLI/T is co-directed by Sam Hopple and Taryn Wiens and is based in Portland, Oregon.