Paola Cabal + (f)utility projects


Sculpture Garden:
(f)utility projects

August 30 – October 3, 2015
Closing Reception: Saturday, October 3, 1 – 3pm

Curated by Karen Azarnia
Exhibition catalog essays by Annie Morse and Karen Azarnia

Paola Cabal, On-site research image, 2015, digital photograph

The Riverside Arts Center is pleased to host Paola Cabal as an artist-in-residence  this August, in preparation for her anticipated exhibition Crescent.  Cabal’s work focuses on documenting the passage of light through space, over a specific span of time.  Cabal will utilize the residency to complete a site-specific installation in response to the arc of daily rhythms of the Freeark Gallery:  the natural light entering the physical architecture of the space, the train which travels at regular intervals behind the gallery, and the Des Plaines River which flows nearby.

While Cabal’s previous work has primarily documented sunlight, the installation at RAC will feature a response to moonlight.   On the recent evening of July 31 – August 1, the artist spent the night in the gallery documenting the light of a rare “blue moon” as it illuminated the gallery walls.  As she states, “the secrets and surprises of a space only reveal themselves once time and attention have been committed.”  Her work is a result of slow and methodical observation, a finely honed act of looking.  Cabal’s painterly gesture of “fixing light” highlights the contradiction of this poetic yet futile act of labor.  It becomes a catalyst for self-reflection on our own fleeting passage through time and space.
–Karen Azarnia

(f)utility projects, On-site research study, 2015, digital photograph with rendering

What purpose does an open, outdoor space situated behind a gallery serve, if not as a respite from the attentive requisites of the gallery space itself? In our upcoming intervention, (ƒ)utility projects (a collaborative comprised of Paola Cabal, Michael Genge, and Chris Grieshaber) seek to elevate the natural elements of the back yard of the Riverside Art Center to “Art Object” status by selectively positioning white “gallery walls” between and around the landscaping and trees already located there.  Partly a response to recent endeavors elsewhere that seek to position “nature” in a gallery setting, and partly an attempt to create a different kind of visual dialogue in a hybrid, natural/built environment, (ƒ)utility projects looks forward to formalizing this heretofore casual space, in this way linking it intimately to the freeark gallery while also positing it as a visually compelling place unto itself.
(ƒ)utility projects