Place Names, on view at the Art Gym March 20 – May 20, 2018.
Christopher Paul Jordan, Gwen Jones, and Robert Lashley host the Ashby Street Panel. Three Artists who grew up within three blocks over three eras exchange stories as they discuss the creative process, coming of age, and the production of history in an era of mass displacement.
Place Names is an exhibition by regional artists manuel arturo abreu (Portland, OR) and Christopher Paul Jordan (Tacoma, WA). Through painting, sculpture, built environments, and explorations of language, Place Names explores the abstracted visual and emotional cues that influence how a sense a “place” is communicated. The artists each construct visual narratives from notions of the geographical and cultural locales that have been generative to their thinking as artists and poets. The works in Place Names appropriate objects such as stray window frames, graffiti-laden panels, well-worn maps, and evocations of their workspaces as signifiers of the cultural, economic, and racial influences within inherited identity.
manuel arturo abreu (b. 1991, Santo Domingo) is an artist and writer from the Bronx. They received their BA in Linguistics from Reed College in 2014, and currently, live and work in a garage in southeast Portland. Recent group exhibitions with Rhizome and the New Museum (online), the Cooley Gallery (Portland), Chicken Coop Contemporary (Portland), Veronica project space (Seattle), and AA|LA Gallery (Los Angeles). Recent publications in Art in America, Rhizome, CURA, SFMoMA Open Space, AQNB, et al. abreu is the author of List of Consonants (Bottlecap Press, 2015) and transtrender (Quimérica Books, 2016), and their debut collection of critical writing is forthcoming 2018.
Born and based in Tacoma Washington (1990), Christopher Paul Jordan integrates virtual and physical public space to form infrastructures for dialogue and self-determination among dislocated people. Jordan’s paintings and sculptures are artifacts from his work in community and time-capsules for expanded inquiry. His public art projects have been implemented domestically and internationally including Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, and Mexico. Jordan has received the 2017 Neddy Artists Award for painting, the Jon Imber Painting Fellowship, the GTCF Foundation of Art Award, the James W Ray Venture Project Award, and the most recent summer commission for Seattle Art Museum’s Olympic Sculpture Park.
Place Names is the first exhibition curated by Ashley Stull Meyers as the Robert and Mercedes Eichholz Director and Curator of the Art Gym and Belluschi Pavilion.
In conjunction with the exhibition Place Names, The Art Gym presents artist Christopher Paul Jordan in conversation with Gwen Jones and Robert Lashley about their respective practices and the ever-changing socioeconomic landscape of Tacoma, WA. (May 20, 2018 / Portland, OR) Watch the documented conversation here: SALVAGE: Christopher Paul Jordan, Gwen Jones, and Robert Lashley in conversation