“Bebe le Strange”
D’Amelio Terras, New York
June 29 – August 12, 2005
Curated by Rachel Uffner and Barb Choit
“Under my skin you’ve got my mind rearranged.” -Bebe Le Strange, Heart, 1980.
DʼAmelio Terras is pleased to present Bebe le Strange, a collection of works by emerging artists who render the human figure as unfamiliar, uncanny –or simply strange. The show features works by Walead Beshty, Carter, Barb Choit, Zoe Crosher & Leslie Grant, Benjamin Degen, Corin Hewitt, Jamie Isenstein, William Jones, Matt Keegan, Demitrius Oliver, Eileen Quinlan, and Johannes Vanderbeek.
Oliver, Beshty and Quinlan document their own performances, making plausible real life situations appear subtly out of the ordinary. Oliver shoots close up photographs of his body parts interacting with props. Beshty documents himself fetishistically inserting his body into consumer goods at popular American chain stores. Quinlan photographs her hands tediously typing while covered with eerie stage makeup.
Carter, Isenstein, and Keegan represent the body as collection of fragmented parts removed from their unifyed context. Carterʼs mask-like collages of his own facial features are drawn individually and then pieced together. Jamie Isenstein’s artistʼs book of watercolors depict of rows of teeth independent of a mouth. Matt Keegan cuts the faces out of his layered photographic portraits leaving an absence of any subject.
Degen, Choit, and Jones represent the disturbing situation of the body on the verge of becoming its surroundings. Degenʼs illustrative drawings depict the human figure echoing the
forms of the landscape it inhabits. Barb Choitʼs collaged groups of unknown rock bands show individuals becoming a nameless mass through their clichéd pursuit of notoriety. William Jonesʼ documentary series of the culture surrounding rock ʻn roll superstar Morrisey explores the uncanny replication of the image of the singer in both countless images as well as in the imitation of his looks by his fans.
Crosher & Grant, Vanderbeek, and Hewitt depict the human body as an object on which to project personal narrative. Crosher & Grantʼs reprinting of Michell Deboisʼs photo album depicts the same woman posing similarily for the camera over and over again throughout her lifetime. Vanderbeek renders an historical scene in human hair on a plastic mold of his head. Hewittʼs self-portraits are represented by shell-like replication of his parents hair at the time of his conception.