Hold on Tight: Annie Lapin, Mark McKnight, Naudline Pierre, Fay Ray, Michael Stamm, Cammie Staros, Summer Wheat and Wendy White

11 July - 22 August 2020

Shulamit Nazarian is pleased to present Hold on Tight, an exhibition that explores the uncertainty of our moment. Much of our daily life is now encompassed by a sense of precariousness and anxiety, yet we find solace in the small pleasures of quotidian moments. The artworks in this exhibition navigate the complex relationships between these emotions: the desire for touch and connection through isolation and our longing for the people and places that have recently been out of reach. Together, these works highlight the existential task of finding hope through seclusion, vulnerability, and possibility.

  • Fay Ray
    Guardian, 2020
    Stone and steel
    Dimensions variable (approx. 13 x 22 x 14 inches each)
    $12,500 

    Fay Ray

    In this exhibition, Fay Ray continues her exploration of female identity, body adornments, and fetishized objects. The artist compiles visually embellished sculptures that often resemble over-sized charms and pendants, subverting their functionality and shrinking the sense of the viewer's body by the scale and weight of the materials used. In a new sculpture titled Guardian, the work bears semblance to pendants found at desert flea markets; crystals or small stones wrapped in wire and in the form of a peace sign. Simultaneously, they are pulled into the realm of capable and meaningful violence. Guardian is bound; both by the chains to the wall, and by the bondage of its own ceasefire symbolism. Situated by the gallery’s glass facade, the pendants embody their true functionality as one of possible destruction. The rock becomes still, unmoving, but not empty of its potential to break through.

    • FAY RAY Guardian, 2020 Granite and steel Dimensions variable (approx. 13 x 22 x 14 inches)
      FAY RAY
      Guardian, 2020
      Granite and steel
      Dimensions variable (approx. 13 x 22 x 14 inches)
      $5,500.00
    • FAY RAY Goya's Kitchen I, 2020 Bass wood 35 x 15 x 2 inches
      FAY RAY
      Goya's Kitchen I, 2020
      Bass wood
      35 x 15 x 2 inches
      $4,000.00
    • FAY RAY Goya's Kitchen II, 2020 Bass wood 38 x 7.5 x 2 inches
      FAY RAY
      Goya's Kitchen II, 2020
      Bass wood
      38 x 7.5 x 2 inches
      $4,000.00
  • Mark McKnight

    Mark McKnight

    The emotional state of longing and desire permeates Mark McKnight’s silver gelatin prints, which often portray the bodies of queer friends and lovers. McKnight carefully depicts the effects of entropy on the human form and draws an analogous connection with scars found on architecture, urban spaces, and the landscape. The results are formal images that are equally tender and brutal. The photograph Bodyfold, depicts a man’s body tightly cropped and partially obscured. The body subtly contorts to appear as if part of a larger landscape. In the upper left corner is a faint crack in the pavement, evoking the vulnerability of the body itself. McKnight’s photographs elicit a desire for intimate touch across a jagged ravine—implying an erotic, yet merciless, psychological space.

  • Cammie Staros
    COAXED INTO AND OUT OF IT2020
    Ceramic and walnut
    53.5 x 16 x 17.5 inches
    $7,500

    Cammie Staros

    Looking specifically to the shapely vessels of Classical Greece, Cammie Staros’ hand-built objects marry ancient ceramic techniques with contemporary forms. Using references to desire, eroticism, and violence within artifacts from Western Art History, the works allow for a reexamination of the role of historical objects. As seen in Coaxed Into and Out of It, carved wood takes on the form of two arms, modeled after the artist’s own body. Reaching out from the walls in a gesture to make physical connection, one arm subtly shifts into the form of a snake. Just below, is an elongated ceramic vessel with the form and surface pattern that visually references the arm above. Snakes, a symbol of birth and healing, as well as a possible hazard, are combined with a domestic vessel, providing a cautionary message that links the intimacy of home with the dangers of the outside world. 

  • Annie Lapin
    Event2020
    Oil and acrylic on linen
    50 x 82 inches
    $20,000

    Annie Lapin

    Annie Lapin’s paintings reside in a fracturing world, one that seems to push forward and backwards out of the frame simultaneously. Within her works, digital histories and analog mark making come together to form trompe l’oeil scenes that abide neither to the rules of the virtual nor to the physical. In her recent painting Event, made during the COVID-19 quarantine, Lapin merges references to the body as a form of rupture in her pictorial planes. This painting makes use of flash photography as a light source to eerily illuminate a curb, foliage, and sky—as if walking in a neighborhood that looks familiar, but somehow isn’t. Floating on the surface of the painting is an ominous single red rose and two outstretched hands, alluding to the desire for access to the outside world.

    • Annie Lapin Stop Calling, 2018 Oil, acrylic, charcoal and vinyl paint on linen 36 x 26 inches
      Annie Lapin
      Stop Calling, 2018
      Oil, acrylic, charcoal and vinyl paint on linen
      36 x 26 inches
      $14,000.00
    • ANNIE LAPIN To Sit And Think, 2018 Oil, acrylic, charcoal, flocking and vinyl paint on linen 36 x 20 x 3 inches
      ANNIE LAPIN
      To Sit And Think, 2018
      Oil, acrylic, charcoal, flocking and vinyl paint on linen
      36 x 20 x 3 inches
      $14,000.00
  • Michael Stamm
    Causes2018
    Oil and acrylic on canvas
    48 x 36 inches
    $17,500

    Michael Stamm

    Michael Stamm’s paintings and drawings critically consider the popular tenets of our time, reconciling hope and skepticism, in an era that straddles both. In Nihilism, a television screen occupies most of the painting, evoking a secluded space filled with pressing static and deafening quiet. Visible noise, also known as TV snow, acts as a mediator between the domestic space and the outside winterscape. The electronic frame becomes a psychological space for longing, a calling for a place out of time, or an escape from the confinement one is currently in. In Causes, cramped text that reads “causes cause causes to cause causes” overlays an image of an antacid being stirred into a glass of water. The repetition of the text suggests a distressed mantra, while the ‘remedy’ in the painting functions as a real neutralizer for symptoms related to anxiety. Like the spinning of the spoon, one can imagine the phrase circling around in the mind. 

  • Nihilism, 2012 Oil and acrylic on canvas wrapped panel 48 x 60 inches $21,500
    Nihilism2012

    Oil and acrylic on canvas wrapped panel

    48 x 60 inches
    $21,500
  • Wendy White
    Pleasure! (with drop)2017
    Dibond, ball chain
    60 x 60 inches
    Edition 1 of 3
    $9,500

    Wendy White

    Many of the paintings and sculptures by Wendy White serve as cultural critique that offers a glimmer of hope. Employing language and aesthetics often related to male-dominated areas, from Abstract Expressionism to the machismo of cigarette ads, the artist asks us to reconsider American myths and symbols of the sublime. In Uncontained (Orange with Cloud and Rainbow), a continuation of earlier work using gestural mark-making, depicts a mostly dark, abstract field drained of color. The rainbow, a cultural symbol of optimism, becomes black, cold, and industrial. Holding these dichotomies of fulfillment and emptiness in the same space is also apparent in Pleasure! (with drip). These coded works point to a troubled cultural past that continues to inform our present, allowing us to get a glimpse of a more hopeful future. 

    • Wendy White Uncontained (Pixel Heart), 2020 Dibond, ball chain 46 x 44.25 inches
      Wendy White
      Uncontained (Pixel Heart), 2020
      Dibond, ball chain
      46 x 44.25 inches
      $11,000.00
    • Wendy White Uncontained (Orange with Cloud and Rainbow), 2020 Dibond, ball chain 46 x 44.25
      Wendy White
      Uncontained (Orange with Cloud and Rainbow), 2020
      Dibond, ball chain
      46 x 44.25
      $11,000.00
  • Naudline Pierre
    EYE SEE2017
    Oil and enamel on canvas
    40 x 26 inches

    Naudline Pierre

    Caught between the beautiful and the haunting, Naudline Pierre’s paintings depict intimate, otherworldly scenes in which her central protagonist, a twin for the artist, resides in an unstable, hypnotic and alternative world. Many of Pierre’s works serve as portals; they summon a bottomless, swaying space where figures appear and disappear. Finding this subject in moments of embrace, she gains protection and healing with the touch of adjacent beings—these figures attempt to ground the protagonist. In the painting Eye See, gravity is unclear, as several figures seem to hover; an intimate touch to the forehead of the main subject renders her motionless, while still fully aware of her surroundings.

  • SUMMER WHEAT

    SUMMER WHEAT

    This sense of limbo can also be found in Summer Wheat's textural art objects, which destabilize material boundaries and elevate quotidian life. In Midnight Snack, Wheat references Gustave Courbet's epochal Stonebreakers (1848), a controversial painting that depicts laborers participating in back breaking work, paying no attention to the viewer. Similar in composition and anonymity, Midnight Snack replaces the stonebreakers with unknown female figures, memorializing the fleeting moment of the domestic work-break. In this dreamy hour, one would find themselves gathering midnight snacks, residing in a liminal space between day and night, wake and sleep. The figures in the work are also walking on branches, precariously balancing themselves in an unstable space. In Wheat's works on paper, Angel Hair, Pills, and Oranges, the artist takes banal slices of the everyday with a moment of anxious pause. These seemingly quotidian scenes are rendered with a sense of quiet pleasure, focusing on the familiar in a time of uncertainty.

  • Midnight Snack, 2019 Acrylic on aluminum mesh 68 x 141 inches $50,000
     
    Midnight Snack2019
    Acrylic on aluminum mesh
    68 x 141 inches 
    $50,000
    • SUMMER WHEAT Oranges, 2017 Pen and ink on paper 11.25 x 14 inches
      SUMMER WHEAT
      Oranges, 2017
      Pen and ink on paper
      11.25 x 14 inches
      $4500 framed
    • SUMMER WHEAT Pills, 2017 Pen and ink on paper 11 x 14 inches
      SUMMER WHEAT
      Pills, 2017
      Pen and ink on paper
      11 x 14 inches
      $4500 framed
    • SUMMER WHEAT Angel Hair, 2017 Pen and ink on paper 11 x 14 inches
      SUMMER WHEAT
      Angel Hair, 2017
      Pen and ink on paper
      11 x 14 inches
      $4500 framed
  • SUMMER WHEAT, Gardener, 2018

    Summer Wheat

    Gardener, 2018

    MDF and automotive paint

    18 x 48 x 18 inches

    $13,000