Four Steps to Self Help
May 26 - July 1, 2017
Color is light and energy. Our body and mind are energy. All are interconnected within the framework of our perceptive surroundings. Color enters through our eyes and skin, affecting our emotions, moods, and mental state of being—it is often the overlooked factor in how we can maintain balance and control.
The Swiss psychologist Carl Jung elucidated on the human temperament, breaking it into four color groups. Each group having its own counterpart in nature—cool blues of sky and sea, earth/green, sunshine yellow, and fiery red—we all possess each color within ourselves, but it is up to us to maintain the balance. Pinpointing our personal colors will help reassess our identity, improve development and interpersonal relationships, and re-define our strengths and weaknesses. Colors often come with predetermined symbolic associations, and when applied correctly, they can really stimulate your spirit and surroundings. Purple can signify luxury, yellow whimsy, green nurture and nature, blue calm, black power. A specific pink (Baker-Miller) is known to reduce hostility and has been used in correctional facilities to create a calming environment.
Using color as a unifier, the artwork in this exhibition allows us to pause, escape the routine of daily life, and reflect inward. The title, Four Steps to Self-Help, explains the design of the exhibition. Each artist represents a sequential benchmark in the process. This therapeutic program includes four artists/collectives and is outlined in the four chapters: a multi-sensory effect, the transference of energy, the sanctuary, and submitting to our indulgences.
Aliza Morell’s recent work meditates on the simultaneous phenomenon of color as light and color as material. She creates multi-sensory surfaces through the process of erasure into wet gradients of color, shaping optical forms through color-fields. Part of an ongoing series, each painting on view features a central three-loop form of variant, vaguely floral shapes that span from exuberant to wilted postures. The application and interaction of color joins optically with the artist’s touch, creating a Multi-Sensory Effect.
Reflective of the meditative process and the mythic characteristics of her art, Evie Falci’s work illustrates a higher understanding of Transference. She composites intricate patterns with small beads and rhinestones, creating “paintings” that expand into ornate constructions; a single bead transforms and becomes part of a more complex whole. The abstract patterns give the viewer space for meditation. The synergetic nature of her work inspires self-reflection. There is structure to latch onto, but space in the refractions for individual translations.
Nicole Ruggiero along with Jeremy McKeehen, Prashast Thapan, and Michelle Cortese fabricated an intimate glimpse into a domestic space via a virtual reality experience. The game navigates the surface comforts of a nostalgia-filled environment and imbibes in the repose of the familiar. This piece represents a need to construct and explore new sanctuaries outside of our pre-existing realities in order to escape the often unavoidable chaos.
Calli Moore explores Indulgence in her tactile, lush, and overabundant wall sculptures. She navigates the color spectrum from industrial shades of gasoline to pastels, confronting the viewer with a vibrant sensory display that you want to absorb and touch.
We are all stressed. Immerse yourself in the subconscious levels of this spectral healing and holistic approach to self-medication through color therapy.
(pictured: No Esc by Nicole Ruggiero)
(pictured: No Esc by Nicole Ruggiero)
About the Artists
Aliza Morell lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. She holds an MFA from Rutgers University (2014) and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2005). Her solo exhibition Wellspring is currently on view at Popular Kids in Portland. OR. She’s been featured in recent group shows at Tempus Projects in Tampa, FL; Castor Gallery and Nancy Margolis Gallery in New York, NY; and Elijah Wheat Showroom and Trestle Projects in Brooklyn, NY. Noteworthy publications include New American Paintings Northeast No. 128 (2017) and No. 110 (2014), and an interview ALT ESC in Volume 6 of our digital platform.
Evie Falci (b. 1985) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She is a 2007 graduate of the Maryland Institute, College of Art, Baltimore, Maryland. She participated in the Marie Walsh Sharpe Space Program in 2011 – 2012. She has had solo/ two-person shows shows at Castor Gallery, Jeff Bailey Gallery, and the The Lodge Gallery. Her work has been included in numerous exhibitions at various venues, including, The Hole, Eric Firestone Gallery, and The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft.
Calli Moore is a Brooklyn-based artist whose work deals with the physicality of paint as both material and form. Incorporating a variety of materials into her practice, Moore’s abstract pieces extend the vocabulary of painting by experimenting with different techniques of mark-making within the pictorial frame. An Iowa native, Moore received her BFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Iowa in 2014, continuing on to American University where she earned her MFA in 2016. Moore has shown work across the United States and has held residencies at GlogauAIR , Berlin (2015) and at the Chautauqua Institute, Chautauqua, NY (2016). Most recently, Moore’s work was included in group exhibitions in Los Angeles and New York.
Nicole Ruggiero is a 3-D visual artist who makes work based on the internet and online trends. Nicole exposes the influences that technology imbues on culture and subverts them with the existential feelings people face when interacting through the medium. She emphasizes the social conditioning of the internet by expressing emotion through figurative themes such as the consequences of technology and resultant online culture. Her art is a beacon of that culture and a forum of discussion for people around the world. Her piece was created in collaboration with Jeremy McKeehan, Prash Thapan, Michelle Cortese, and Calvin Hunting.
Jeremy McKeehen (@jmckeehen) is an art director and motion designer who creates experiential pieces while bringing clients’ visions to fruition. His work uses powerful and thought-provoking themes surrounding human emotion, technology, and the infinite. By painting a moving picture for viewers, he develops unique worlds in which they are free, as well as encouraged, to become completely lost in. With a cornucopia of colors and a rainbow assault on the retina, he aims to expand human consciousness and provoke the primal.
Prashast Thapan is an Indian video game designer whose work focuses on escapism. He works in television in New York City.
Michelle Cortese is a Toronto-born designer, maker, futurist, and typophile. Her background is a twisted medley of interface design, art direction, physical computing, fabrication, VR, and graphics programming. Her work navigates the intersection of digital and material worlds, focusing on designing and developing next-generation user interfaces. Michelle is currently a senior design technologist at Refinery29 and has exhibited work at CES, Tribeca Film Festival, Engadget Expand via Make Magazine, Sundance Film Festival, Absolut Nights, Moogfest, BLDG92, and more.
Calvin Hunting Pia is a Brooklyn-based sound designer, mixer and composer. Currently a lead mixer at the audio post-house One Thousand Birds in New York, Calvin shapes and weaves sound to help tell stories for film, TV, web, and VR. His recent work includes Morgan Millers twisted animated showdown “There’s Too Many Of These Crows,” William Thompson’s surreal spiritual journey “Horn,” and artist Jordan Wolfson’s VR piece “Real Violence” part of the Whitney Biennial.
About the Spring Curator-in-Residence
Alt Esc is a Brooklyn-based, artist-run curatorial team and publication started by Alison Sirico and Irina V Makarova in May 2016. Sparked by the realization that disparity exists between the institutionalized art world and the new wave of rising artists, Alt Esc was founded to vocalize the leading ideas and trends in young contemporary studio practice. We are interested in individuals and collectives who are players in the art world’s subcultural framework and those who are community oriented. Equal parts publication and event production team, we seek to communicate dialogues that manifest into praxis. Through publication and curating exhibitions, we strive to connect rising artists with new opportunities, while honoring and sharing their current achievements with a broader audience. Using the studio visit as a model for a narrative, we hope to communicate, foster and archive today’s young cultural landscape.