“Nest” curated by Anne Lawrence
curated by Richland College instructor/arts PR person: Anne Lawrence
Bows and Arrows presents “Nest” featuring Michael Mazurek and Jesse Morgan Barnett, curated by Anne Lawrence, opening Saturday, February 19, 2011, 6-9 p.m. The exhibition will include site-specific installations by each artist.
“Nest” centers on the question how do artists respond to having a child? While feminist and conceptual artist Mary Kelly’s seminal “Post-Partum Documents” tracked the evidence of the child with forensic precision creating a subtle narrative of the mother’s relationship with the growing child, Mazurek and Barnett, both fathers, are each known for their elaborate constructions and installations; thus turning away from the processes of the body towards the process of making and building.
By changing the physical space of the room, they are reordering the spatial experience. New parents, like other animals, are hit with a powerful urge to create a safe place for the birth and infancy of their offspring. This need to “nest” goes beyond cleaning clutter and nursery decorating often giving way to a process of self-reflection and evaluation of the pre-child state. There is a need to put the house in order, literally and metaphorically.
After the birth of his first child, Mazurek was motivated to make a dramatic change. Quitting his full-time job he enrolled in graduate school, first in architecture, then fine arts. Mazurek’s work has shown a strong inclination toward building and construction evolving into complex, even chaotic, structures of ever increasing size, with strong references to architecture and theatrical stage-setting. Mazurek stated, “I returned to art and chose this path very specifically due to the birth of my daughter. The clarity of that moment still amazes me. She put everything in perspective, practically immediately.”
Barnett’s work bridges photography, video, installation, and performance. In this exhibition he will present a video and sound-piece laced with a fetal heartbeat along with a site-specific installation. As he explained just a few days before the birth of his son in mid-January, “Coping with both biological and artistic creativity occurring at the same time is challenging and stimulating.”
Mazurek and Barnett will both receive their Master of Fine Arts from University of Texas at Arlington in 2011. Lawrence is expecting her first child sometime in early March. The image on the postcard is of her sonogram taken January 25. Bows and Arrows is located at 1925 Greenville Avenue, Dallas Texas 75206. Open Wednesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. The exhibition will be on view February 19-March 23, 2011.
FRONTROW REVIEW of NEST: link