January 28-March 5, 2021

Exhibition at Art Center Sarasota
Virtual Opening: TBA

The exhibition ‘Skins in It’ is an installation of multi-media works that deal primarily with the experience of the body—both imagistically and metaphorically—through a variety of means.

Neil Bender’s work is interested in the complexity of sexuality and the body through paper and paint, making flattened images that play with the shallow spaces of slightly-overlapping images, and the shallow spaces of popular cultural vernaculars. Recent images range from small-scale collages and sketchbook drawings to shaped, cut-paper garments, and large, expansive wall murals.

Cynthia Mason’s low-relief and sculptural wall pieces deal with a plethora of materials to crate abstract forms that riff off of grids and known structures that are uncanny and disarming. Some of the soft sculptures recall solid objects (handbags and shoes), but lack rigidity. Some recall the body, but lack smooth contours. Sewn from coarse fabrics and stuffed with shredded documents, they bloat and pudge. Gender is rendered in provocative shapes noisily on display, questioning gender performance in politics and how we consume it.

Both artists use whimsy and serious play to make viewers aware of the potency of negotiating and reconciling art amongst other bodies in public spaces.

The variety of scales and shapes of both artists’ work lends to creative hangings and relationships. The imagined asymmetrical and challenging hanging of the show is emphasized by the rectilinear quality of the gallery space.

A site-specific atmospheric wall painting serves as a stage for the actors (the paintings, drawings, and sculptures) to have enhanced dialogues—revealing a kinetic, tactile, and immersive collaborative experience that is sensorily-engaging, ribald, and pleasurable.

Download pdf catalog: SKINSINIT_catalog WEB