SCOTT SPEH GALLERY
845 W Washington Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60607
( scott at westernexhibitions dot com)
Wednesdays thru Saturdays
11am to 6pm
editions and more
8 to May 14, 2011
Cast & Cascade
Exhibitions is thrilled to present a solo show by San Francisco-based
artist MICHELLE BLADE in Gallery 1. The show
will open with a reception that is free and open to the public
on Friday, April 8th from 5 to 8pm.
For her first solo show at Western Exhibitions, Cast &
Cascade, Blade brings together painting and sculpture to
create an environment in which the past and present are interlaced.
Influenced by Romanticism and West Coast utopic idealism, Blade’s
mystical paintings mine the nostalgia of a bygone era, simultaneously
marking a passing moment while looking forward into an unknown
with cosmic reverie.
Using a variety of materials such as Dura-lar, lace, wood, paper
and found objects, the resulting installation is a meditation
on dualities: the real and unreal, light and dark, presence and
absence. Painted wall tapestries, urns containing the ashes of
past burned paintings, assorted paintings of anonymous figures,
book covers, and Tarot card sessions rest on top of wooden shelves.
Along with a white lace sculpture of a chair, these items call
to mind the theoretical discourse concerning painting’s
own life and death. These works seek to create an engagement with
individuals while simultaneously questioning the effectiveness
of its methods and the potential of all such quests. Ultimately,
these works serve as a reminder of man’s persistent isolation
and the persistent and timeless desire to connect with something
Blade’s work has been featured at Triple Base, Jack
Hanley, SFMOMA, and Baer Ridgway Exhibitions, San Francisco; the
San Jose ICA; Carl Berg Gallery and Roberts & Tilton, Los
Angeles; Space 1026, Philadelphia; Union Gallery, London; V1 Gallery,
Copenhagen; the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Stüttgart
and her painted Dura-lar rug was included here at Western Exhibitions
in Ryan Travis Christian’s group show “The
Power of Selection, Part 3”. She is a 2007 recipient
of the Murphy-Cadogan Fellowship, a 2011 Alternative Exposure
Grant recipient as well as recent SFMOMA SECA finalist. She received
her MFA in painting from California College of the Arts in San
Francisco. Blade currently lives in Oakland, Ca. where she directs
Sight School, an alternative artist run storefront.