Middle Zone

“What we understand as building or see as the urban landscape is just this sort of middle zone…, that given ingredient which is somewhat useful and obedient, but is really just the beginning of speculations about what could be beyond it and what numbers of directions there could be.”

The eight artists included in this exhibition use the built environment as a starting point for their work, playing with the intended function of quotidian architectural spaces and materials in favor of something more open-ended. They explore how we experience the “in-between” through spatial interventions, perceptual shifts, formal investigations with an architectural vocabulary, or an engagement with the history of a given space and its occupants. The work often evolves from material play and experimentation, or a process of building and destroying, among other things. Frequently working between mediums, these artists give the discarded or underconsidered new meaning, transforming how we perceive the built environment—the “middle zone”—in a variety of ways.

Gabriela Salazar received an MFA in painting from Rhode Island School of Design and a BA from Yale University. Her recent solo projects include For Closure (Outdoors, the Bronx), a monumental public art piece with the Bronx River Art Center / DOT; and Site Set at the Luchsinger Gallery, CT. Her work has also been included in group shows across the country and has appeared in The New York Times, Art In America, and The New Yorker. Salazar has been in residence at Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture. She is currently a Smack Mellon “Hot Pick,” and her work is included in La Bienal 2013: Here is Where We Jump at El Museo del Barrio, through January 4, 2014. She lives and works in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Alison Owen makes site-responsive installations that alter the environment in subtly invasive ways, calling attention to the underlying materials and activities of everyday life. Owen received her MFA from Claremont Graduate University. She has participated in residencies at the Bronx Museum of Art, foundation id11 in Delft, the Netherlands, and Gallery Aferro in New Jersey. The Rhode Island State Council for the Arts awarded Owen the New Genres fellowship in 2010, and she was a finalist for the MacColl Johnson fellowship in 2011. Her work has been exhibited in numerous galleries, including Cuchifritos, NY, the DeCordova Museum in Massachusetts, Smack Mellon in Brooklyn, Bank Gallery and Kinkead Contemporary in Los Angeles, and the Natural History Museum in Providence, RI. Owen lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Christian Maychack was born in Troy, NY and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He received a BFA from Ohio University and an MFA from San Francisco State University. In 2008 he attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He has received fellowships from The Headlands Center for the Arts (2002 & 2006); The MacDowell Colony (2007); The Edward F. Albee Foundation, (2011); The Vermont Studio Center (2003 & 2013); and The La Napoule Art Foundation (2013), among others. In 2012 Christian became a New York Foundation for the Arts fellow in painting. Notable group exhibitions include, the 2006 California Biennial, Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, CA (2006); Exit Music for a Film, Grimm Rosenfeld Gallery, Munich, Germany (2007); Staging Ground, The Horticultural Society of New York, New York, NY (2010); Dead in August, Site95 at NYCAMS, New York, NY (2012); Oblique Strategies, Peter Fingesten Gallery, Pace University, New York, NY (2013); and Relax a Little, Narwhal Projects, Toronto, Ontario. Maychack has had three solo shows with Gregory Lind Gallery, San Francisco, CA, and most recently had his third solo show with Jeff Bailey Gallery, New York, NY.

Jim Lee received his MFA from the University of Delaware in 1996. He has had several international solo exhibitions including shows at Galerie VidalCuglietta, Brussels; Motus Fort, Tokyo; FDC Satellite, Brussels; Galerie Markus Winter, Berlin; Freight and Volume, New York; and Nicelle Beauchene Gallery, New York. Additionally he has been included in exhibitions at Galerie Lelong, New York; LAND, Los Angeles, Andrae Kaufmann Gallery, Berlin; IMOCA, Indianapolis, White Flag Projects, St. Louis; Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Atlanta; Larry Becker Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; and the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, NY. Lee lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Ethan Greenbaum is a New York based artist whose work investigates the intersection of photography, sculpture and urban architecture. He regularly exhibits his work nationally in a variety of commercial galleries, nonprofit spaces, museums, and sculpture parks. Selected venues include The Suburban, Chicago; Derek Eller, New York; Thierry Goldberg, New York; Circus Gallery, Los Angeles; Marlborough Gallery, New York; Steven Turner, Los Angeles; The Aldrich Museum, Connecticut; and Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City. Recent projects include a group exhibition at Kansas Gallery, New York and at the Abrons Art Center, New York. He has a forthcoming solo show at Kansas Gallery. His work has been discussed in The New York Times, Modern Painters, Artforum, New American Paintings, ArtReview, and Saatchi Daily Magazine, among others. He received an MFA in painting from Yale School of Art.

Ashley Carter was born in New York City. She is a recent graduate of the MFA program at Columbia University in New York, and received her BFA from California College of the Arts in San Francisco. Working in large-scale sculpture, her practice explores the intersection of image, structure and architecture. She was an Artist in Residence at Andrea Zittel’s AZ West compound in the summer of 2012. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn New York.

John Bianchi received an MFA from Yale School of Art and a BFA from Cooper Union. He has exhibited his work at WildLife Gallery (Brooklyn), Signal (Brooklyn), Know More Games (Brooklyn), Primetime (Brooklyn), Night Gallery (Los Angeles), Thierry Goldberg (New York), and Bodega (Philadelphia), among others. Bianchi has participated in residencies at the Terra Foundation in Giverny, France, the Vermont Studio Center, and Placemaker Gallery, and he is the recipient of the Fannie B. Pardee and Ruth Epstein Memorial Prizes in Sculpture. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Katie Bell is an artist originally from Rockford, Illinois USA. She received her BA from Knox College (Galesburg, IL) in 2008 and graduated in 2011 from the Rhode Island School of Design (Providence, RI) with an MFA in Painting. Bell has shown her work at a variety of venues, including Mixed Greens Gallery in New York, Nudashank in Baltimore, PLUG Projects in Kansas City, Okay Mountain Gallery in Austin, and the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln, MA. Bell lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Gordon Matta-Clark cited in Corinne Diserens, ed., Gordon Matta Clark (London: Phaidon, 2003), p.84.