Allison Smith’s artistic practice investigates the material culture of historical reenactment and the role of craft in constructions of national and gender identities. Invoking various forms of public convocation such as battle reenactments, peddlers’ markets, quilting bees, military musters, parades and craft fairs, Smith uses a range of tactile media such as textiles, ceramics, printmaking and wood furniture to produce performative sculptures, interactive installations and artist-led pubic events that redo, restage and refigure our sense of collective memory. Smith’s large-scale sculptures take on an artifact quality through their association with events and their engagement with the public, whether through activities of collective making, activation in social space or material transformation from one context to the next.
Allison Smith (born 1972 in Manassas, Virginia) lived in New York from 1990 until 2008 when she relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area to join the faculty of California College of the Arts, where she is Chair of the Sculpture Program. She completed her undergraduate studies at Parsons School of Design and her graduate studies at Yale University School of Art and the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program. Smith has produced solo exhibitions and artist-led projects for Public Art Fund, SFMOMA, MCA Denver and Berkeley Art Museum MATRIX Series, among others. She has contributed her work to museum surveys at MASS MoCA, CAM Houston, Creative Time, Andy Warhol Museum, P.S.1 MoMA, Palais de Tokyo, The Mattress Factory and many more.
Residents from United States
The large-format prints on burlap and the memory-laden objects in Linarejos Moreno’s installations become sculptural objects that speak of absence. Her constructions document spaces that are fated to disappear. However, this documentation is not objective; rather, Moreno aims to reach a state of estrangement linked to personal memory and the intimacy of “the inhospitable.” To accomplish this, she sets up a series of actions and rituals which she then photographs. The photographs speak about the subjective memory of these spaces and the globalizing trend in economics that has triggered their disappearance. Always on the boundary between theatrical figuration and complex ritual, she explores the fragility of human beings when faced with economic machinery and time.
Linarejos Moreno graduated in Conservation and Restoration from the National Heritage and Cultural Assets School (E.S.C.R.B.C) and the Fine Arts School of the Complutense University of Madrid. She was awarded a 2012 Fulbright grant to conduct research at Rice University, Houston. Her solo exhibitions include In the Country of Last Things, Llucia Homs Gallery, Barcelona and Plañideras, Vacío 9 Gallery, Madrid. Her group exhibitions include Artifactual Realities, Fotofest 2012, Station Museum, Houston; Entropías. Otros imaginarios, otros vacios de lugar, PhotoEspaña 2009; Idilio sueño y Falacia, Centro de Arte Contemporaneo Da2, Salamanca; Arte Emergente Español, Alcalá 31 (CAM), Madrid; and Entre dos mares, Valencia Bienal. Moreno has been awarded the Purificación Garcia Prize for Contemporary Photography and the ABC prize of Painting and Photography, among others.
Residents from Spain
Eloise Fornieles’ practice is predominantly performance-based. Focusing on one-to-one interventions within installations and soundscapes, she invites audiences to question simple interactions and gestures – from the intimate and profound to the prosaic and banal. This investigation into personal human connections is framed within a broader overview of the relationship between body and environment, and the individual’s place as part of a much larger system. Fornieles’ installations create a space for contemplation, whilst her own emphasis on physical endurance provides a backdrop for a more visceral understanding of the body as material, with its limitations and its capabilities. Engaging with strands of mythology, ritual and storytelling, and often depicting animals, she teases out the symbolic resonances that hold meaning within our everyday interactions.
Eloise Fornieles (born 1980, Winchester, UK) has worked and lived in London since 2004. After a BA in Fine Art at Kingston University, London, Fornieles graduated from the Slade School of Fine Art in 2006 with an MFA in Fine Art Media. Selected exhibitions include Their Wonderlands, Midlands Art Centre, Birmingham; On and On, La Casa Encendida, Madrid; Natural Wonders: New Art from London, Babakov Art Projects, Moscow; Fashion in Film Festival, Tate Modern, London; Carrion, Haunch of Venison, Berlin; and The Body is an Ocean, Paradise Row, London, 2011.