The Artist in Residence Program at Recology San Francisco will host an exhibition and reception for current artists-in-residence Ramekon O’Arwisters, Anja Ulfeldt, and student artist Jinmei Chi on Friday, January 20, from 5-8pm and Saturday, January 21, from 11am-1pm. Additional viewing hours will be held on Tuesday, January 24, from 5-7pm, with a gallery walk-through with the artists at 6pm. This exhibition will be the culmination of four months of work by the artists who have scavenged materials from the dump to make art and promote recycling and reuse.
Ramekon O’Arwisters: Smooth the Edges
Ramekon O’Arwisters is a social-practice artist who creates collaborative art projects infused with folk-art traditions that foster a culture of community building. During his residency he has continued this work, but has also created a collection of sculptures that connect to the core tenets that underlie his practice. Working with hundreds of shards—broken pieces of dishware and pottery—he has made powerful visual representations of disconnection, damage and fracture. Shards fill cabinets, spill out of picture frames, and are amassed in found objects, becoming overwhelming in their magnitude. While O’Arwisters’s work acts as a metaphor for personal and societal rupture, it also serves as a strategy for repair. He has taken great care to sand the sharp edges on many of the broken pieces, likening the process to other calming or healing acts such as meditating or hiking. During the exhibition, he will provide sanded shards that the public can take away as tangible reminders of the importance of smoothing our sharp edges as we travel through the world and interact with one another.
O’Arwisters has also continued his Crochet Jam events during his residency, facilitating free-form craft exploration with the children who attend tours of the Recology facility. During the Saturday, January 21 reception, O’Arwisters will host a Crochet Jam for visitors of all ages in the gallery.
O’Arwisters is the recipient of a Eureka Fellowship, a San Francisco Foundation Grant, and San Francisco Arts Commission Cultural Equity Grants. He has been an artist-in-residence at the Djerassi Residence Artist Program, the deYoung Museum, and WORKS San Jose. His art has been exhibited in the Bay Area at SOMArts, Root Division, the Museum of the African Diaspora, the Richmond Art Center, the Luggage Store Gallery, the African American Art and Culture Complex, and the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Duke University and a BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. crochetjam.com
Anja Ulfeldt: Beyond Repair
With the title Beyond Repair as her central theme, Anja Ulfeldt resurrects objects that have been cast into obsolescence. Her intention is not to merely reinstate them, but move past repair to imbue them with an afterlife as a way to mourn, accept and ultimately embrace change.
Simultaneously enhancing and subverting a sense of place, Ulfeldt has used these objects to create an interconnected body of work that is inherently site-specific and geared toward an exhibition that is itself one large installation. She renders uncanny the most basic infrastructure such as flooring, windows and vents to create a questionable and changeable psychological space. By upending expectations, Ulfeldt constructs an environment that is seemingly free of authority and open to doubt. But alongside this uncertainty, she also provides opportunities for viewers to escape into the poetics of small moments. Objects move by forces unseen, what we think we are watching is not quite as it appears, and our perceptions are given free rein to shift from the real to the fantastic.
Ulfeldt holds a MFA from Stanford University and a BFA from the California College of the Arts. She has been an artist-in-residence at the Exploratorium and Lost and Foundry in Oakland. She has exhibited in the Bay Area at Pro Arts Gallery, Kala Art Institute, SOMArts, Root Division, the San Mateo Maker Faire, and in venues in New York, London, and Salzburg, Austria. She is a recipient of a 2013 Murphy and Cadogan Award, and a 2015 Joan Mitchell Foundation Emerging Artist Finalist Award. She is the co-director of On-Sight Project in Oakland.
Jinmei Ch: Dizz Mall
Dizz Mall is a fictional store created by Jinmei Chi who plays with the tropes of marketing and sales to illustrate the absurdity of our culture of consumption. Chi has packaged found materials, combining items to create nonsensical products, and presents them in a store-like setting. Promotional brochures proclaim the values to be had at Dizz Mall and the necessity of the store’s offerings in our lives. Ironically using items scavenged from the trash that once stocked the shelves of similar retail establishments, Chi points out how quickly objects can shift from valued commodities to worthless discards.
Chi has just completed her final semester as an undergraduate at the California College of the Arts where she majored in sculpture and minored in visual studies. She has exhibited at A21 Gallery in Oakland, the Kala Art Institute, and the Wattis Gallery in San Francisco.
Reception-Friday, January 20, 5-8pm
Reception-Saturday, January 21, 11am-1pm
Additional viewing hours-Tuesday, January 24, 5-7pm with gallery walk-through with artists at 6:00pm at 401 Tunnel Avenue
Art Studio, 503 Tunnel Avenue and Environmental Learning Center, 401 Tunnel Avenue, San Francisco, CA
Admission is free and open to the public, all ages welcome, wheelchair accessible.
About the Recology Artist in Residence Program:
The Artist in Residence Program at Recology San Francisco was established in 1990 to encourage the conservation of natural resources and instill a greater appreciation for the environment and art in children and adults. Artists work for four months in studio space on site, use materials recovered from the Public Disposal and Recycling Area, and speak to students and the general public. Over 150 Bay Area artists have completed residencies. Applications are accepted annually, June through August.