July 16- July 27 Opening Reception: Friday July 16, 6-8pm Press opening: July 15, 2-6pm
Skin Treatments represents the fruits of Heide Hatry’s recent explorations in the medium of pig-skin, though it also includes a number of unique book-works.
Although she was born in a rustic castle, her early life was spent on her family’s pig farm, and like Joseph Beuys with his fat and felt, she returns to the material in which she was even more deeply immersed than he in the evolution of her more recent work.
Although there was no conscious connection between her upbringing and her current choice of medium, the work makes it quite clear that Ms. Hatry is at home with the material – that its inherent aesthetic qualities, as exemplified by the unexpected surface textures evident in the work, as well as its deeper richness and plasticity, are somehow self-evident in her hands, is the first mark of her mastery. But it is her more personal interaction with the material, her sense that somehow it must retain a kind of rough-hewn elegance if its origins are to be respected that marks both the material and the work as her own.
The work ranges from a series of subtle detournements of Renaissance grace in which the role of the artist in supporting power-relations is thematized, to the extraordinary semi-abstract series collectively entitled “Gash,” in which Hatry engages themes at the heart of animality, some more fundamental than the simplest first steps of social life, some forever raging at the core of personal identity. These at once address the process of social violence by which sexuality, particularly female sexuality, is imposed, or later constructed, and the mindless spermatic imperative to reproduce. The explicitly dual imagery suggests that the latter is always already inside the former, and that the subtly evoked struggle is a foregone inner dialectic. In a further series of delicate, almost minimalist abstracts, Hatry explores the pure texture of her medium. The balance of the exhibition consists of objects which treat both philosophical and technical aspects of the material, and, finally, of a group of unique artist’s books, reflecting Hatry’s long-standing and continuing interest in the book as art medium, treating texts by Paul Celan, Frederic Tuten, Friedrich Hoelderlin, Goethe, Keats, Beckett, Walter Abish, Borges and others.
Heide Hatry was born in 1965 in Holzgerlingen, Germany. After studying at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Stuttgart and the Paedagogische Hochschule in Heidelberg, she taught art at a private art academy in Heidelberg for thirteen years. She has exhibited in group shows in Heidelberg and at Volume Gallery and DNA Gallery in Provincetown, MA. The present is her first solo exhibition.
A full catalogue has been published with the exhibition; please contact the gallery for more information.