Jan. 15 – Mar. 20, 2022 · Viscera/Epiphora

Saturday, January 15, 2022, 6:00 PM –
Sunday, March 20, 2022, 5:00 PM

Compound YV
55379 Twentynine Palms Highway,
Yucca Valley, CA, 92284, United States (map)

Opening reception
Saturday, January 15, 2022
6:00 PM – 11:00 PM

 

"If a muscle could talk, what would it say?"
Yvonne Rainer, 2011

Viscera (noun) the internal organs in the main cavities of the body, especially those in the abdomen, e.g. the intestines. 

Epiphora (noun) 1. excessive watering of the eye. 2. epiphora is the repetition of a word or phrase at the end of sentences that are close together in the text. 

Viscera/Epiphora highlights four artists — Akari Uragami, Lara Wilson, Audra Wolowiec, Shawna X — who use their work to explore kinetic experiences of both body and mind as transcribed through bound textiles, water-inspired sound scores, isolating but resilient choreography, and futurist graphics.

Like a court reporter documenting every word and gesture, our muscles contain a transcript of everything we encounter. The experiences captured by our muscles in our daily movements may become dormant, but can resurface at any time throughout our lives. The artists of Viscera/Epiphora use the process of creating work, and the gesture of sharing it, to surface some of these stories. 

We observe acts of fluidity carried by water and the arid desert through the gentle rounds of oo o oos sitting alone but together in Audra Wolowiec’s score inspired by Clarice Lispector’s Agua Viva (loosely translated to Living Water), all the way to the Kelso Dunes in Lara Wilson’s dance film Scrape that inspires a feeling of longing as we confront text that asks us, mid-rainstorm, to imagine ‘a life without incident.’ We observe acts of rigidity carried by bound and unbound shapes, through Akari Uragami’s fleshy and tactile sculptures, to the unknowns the future holds captured in Shawna X’s work.

Across the work we, the viewers, are invited to engage with the artists’ feelings and offer our own interpretations — extracted from bodily movements whether via our mouths, our limbs, our intestines, our eyes. As with the work, we too can be moved in ways that are fluid and rigid, bound and unbound, tactile and far from reach, interpreted and then reinterpreted over and over again. How can this multisensory input from our surroundings translate to our own bodies’ motions, whether that output be expressed through anxiety, intimacy, or beauty?

About the artists

Akari Uragami lives and works in Tokyo, Japan. Using soft sculpture, she expresses the universality of humans as organisms, depicting their internal and external phenomena. These sculptures, which are knitted, sewn and tied, push back against the constraint and bulge, thereby creating beauty in its form of resistance and unpredictable shapes. Her current works consist of three elements - softness, tying as a kind of violence, and stitching that signifies our own culture, commandments, social and the personal beliefs and ideals that shape us. These elements of constraint/fixation, softness/release are woven and knitted together, juxtaposing contradicting senses of security and violence. It combines personal and social, with intimate experiences told through hand-crafted textile and external relationships and interactions represented by ropes, to tell anonymous human stories. Akari graduated from Musashino Art University as a textile major and ESMOD fashion school in 2012. Her work has been exhibited in Korea, London, and California.

Lara Wilson is an art director, graphic designer, independent choreographer, business owner, and writer currently based in Yucca Valley and Dana Point, CA. Originally from a suburb of Detroit, Lara was formally trained as a dancer and choreographer, graduating summa cum laude in 2009 from New York City’s Ailey/Fordham B.F.A. program. She has presented her live art and screen dances to audiences in NY, Southern California, and internationally since 2010. Lara was the creative director and partner of the dance journalism site DIYdancer, designing all three issues of their print journal. She has also consulted for MacArthur Genius Award recipient, Elizabeth Turk, on multiple projects, including the Shoreline Project commissioned by Laguna Art Museum. Since April 2018, she has co-owned and operated Compound YV.

Audra Wolowiec is an artist based in New York whose work oscillates between sculpture, installation, text, and performance with an emphasis on sound and the material qualities of language. Her work has been shown at MASS MoCA, CCS Bard Hessel Museum, ICA at MECA (Maine College of Art), Stony Brook University, and Art in General. Readings and events have taken place at The Poetry Project, Microscope Gallery, and Center for Performance Research. Features on her work include BOMB Magazine, Modern Painters, The Brooklyn Rail, CAA Journal, and Sound American. Residencies include Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Complex Systems Art and Physics Residency at the University of Oregon supported by a National Science Foundation Grant, Dieu Donné, and Institute for Electronic Arts (iea) at Alfred University. Wolowiec directs the publishing platform Gravel Projects.

Shawna X Inc is the creative and artistic practice of New York based creative, Shawna Xiayun, known for her vibrant and graphical image-making. Shawna enjoys projects about cultural identity, the creative process, and motherhood. She has been invited to speak on these topics by Adobe Max, Us by Night, AIGA Keynote speaker, and Creative Independent. She creates experiences in music, fashion, technology, collaborating with clients such as New Yorker, MINI, Academy Awards, Nike, Google, and Ghostly International.

About the curator

Caroline Partamian is a sound and visual artist + curator. Her interests are influenced by her training in dance and abreaction – the extraction of dormant memory stored within a muscle, resurfaced through physical movement, of which an individual was previously unaware. By focusing on the process rather than the anticipated result, she encourages what can be revealed when one becomes conscious of their kinetic movement in the process of creation. Her work has taken on the form of compositions, graphic notations, sound environments, books, video, and more. She has presented work at ISSUE Project Room, Grahamstown South African Fringe, BoxoPROJECTS, Marfa Open, Wassaic Project, Otion Front, Flux Factory, Anthology Film Archives, Babycastles, Compound Yucca Valley, and more. She has organized exhibitions at Compound YV, Flux Factory, Freeman Space, Wythe Hotel, Newburgh-Artist-in-Vacancy, and more. She also runs a small publishing press, Weird Babes, in the form of zines and prints featuring artists' and her own works-in-progress and experiments, and Other Desert Radio (with her partner Ethan Primason) as a means of representing the many voices and interests of the California high desert.