Surface Matters Heather McKenna Curated by Muscle Beach
About As active viewers with memory, much of our interpretation of our complex surroundings has to do with recognition and familiarity. We navigate through visual information, constantly interpreting what we see by means of resemblance. We know that a puddle of water is wet, because we have prior experience with water and the puddle resembles what we are familiar with, being wet. What, though, does the puddle represent? In Nelson Goodman’s book Languages of Art¬ he discusses this, saying, “An object resembles itself to the maximum degree but rarely represents itself; resemblance, unlike representation, is reflexive.”
If we are able to recognize objects through resemblance, we must only be familiar with the appearance of their surface it seems. Can a surface describe its object ontologically? Can we trust what a surface tells us about its object or can it mislead us?
Muscle Beach and Place are pleased to present NY based artist Heather McKenna’s first solo exhibition, Surface Matters. Working in a variety of mediums including sculpture, painting, and installation, McKenna explores the relationship between form, surface, and the ways in which matter is shaped to reflect content. Human-sized plaster forms slip between recognition and amorphous blobs. Two large paintings, pretending to be three: wall painting relating to wall’s paint. There is water without weight, moving with the fluid room.
Heather McKenna (b. Santa Cruz, CA 1991) received a BFA from Pratt Institute in 2013. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
Muscle Beach is an ongoing curatorial project by Flynn Casey and Tony Chrenka. _________________
Interim Series is one of Place's newest programs. We offer up our space a week before our newest shows to a class, an innovative night of performance, or a special project.