When a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly, it must first dissolve itself into a pure matter, from which a new body is formed. In this liminal, mushy state, the body is still only a possibility. No Body Yet explores the intimate and mystical possibilities of this primeval rawness, just on the edge of becoming. Ellie Krakow, Luciana Maas, and So Young Park each capture moments of metamorphosis: the uncanny dismantling of the body, the excavation of a form from an unrestrained undergrowth, or the secret movements of a winking cosmos.
Ellie Krakow’s glazed ceramic Body Frames seem to be straining their pipes. Bulging and puckering, the frames’ nubby tubes and open cubbies imply a building pressure within, stretching the seams of their casings. They invite the eye to circle within them, ricocheting through their negative spaces. Turning in on themselves, Krakow’s tubular systems are suggestive of car parts or digestive tracts. Whether engines or organs, they are simultaneously self-contained and amputated pieces of an absent body - floating on a white wall, like transplants on ice.
Luciana Maas’s application of paint is loose and raw. The surface of her paintings is smeared and sprayed, as though the figures are clawing against abstraction. Ghostly figures hover, cross-legged, holding the smoking tendrils of a staff or the sagging rope of a swing. Still translucent, it’s unclear if they have been summoned from the ether or if they are loitering on the ‘other side.’ In Balanço sobre pedra, 2023, a female form is roughly outlined in fluorescent green and aubergine. The figure’s legs dissolve into an animal that looks out plaintively from the bottom of the canvas. In Maas’s swampy otherworld, animal, plant and human are loose and transient categories.
In So Young Park’s cryptic paintings, clouds build into hands and figures and collapse again into the mist. Dreamlike landscapes are caught in the moment of taking shape, shifting and shivering on the canvas. Park’s paintings are at once gateways to mystical territories and gilded surfaces, blinking back at the viewer. In Appear and Disappear, 2022, the surface is washed in silver, stained like the damp wall of a primordial wishing well or a rusting alien spacecraft. An eye looks out from the bottom of the canvas; curious, inquisitive, all-seeing.- Thea Voyles