A public garden & cultural center

Figuring the Floral

July 21 - December 01, 2019


A flower’s life cycle of budding, blooming and pollinating, as well as its process of decay, strongly echoes the human condition. The exhibition Figuring the Floral features artists who apply this symbolism to their work—touching on race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexual orientation, aging and other facets of identity. Reflecting on the site-specificity of these works exhibited amid the flourishing gardens of Wave Hill, Curator of Visual Arts Eileen Jeng Lynch notes how the exhibition is enhanced by the visible and tangible connections with flora on the grounds.

While floral imagery is often associated with decorative art and femininity, Figuring the Floral subverts these notions—rather, artists complicate such limiting interpretations by relating these natural forms to deeper reflections of self. This group exhibition brings together artists who create new symbolism, some using flowers to alter or obscure the human form and others working in more abstract or literal modes of depiction.  The work includes collage, drawing, painting, photography, sculpture and an outdoor installation amidst the living foliage of the gardens. Exhibiting artists: Derrick Adams, Nicole Awai, Bahar Behbahani, Christian Ruiz Berman, Sanford Biggers, Cecile Chong, Max Colby, Abigail DeVille, Valerie Hegarty, Christopher K. Ho and Kevin Zucker, Diana Lozano, Natalia Nakazawa, Ebony G. Patterson, Bundith Phunsombatlert, Lina Puerta, Simonette Quamina, David Rios Ferreira, Alexandria Smith, Katherine Toukhy, Lina Iris Viktor, William Villalongo and Saya Woolfalk.

 

Pictured above: Figuring the Floral, North Gallery Installation. From left to right: Saya Woolfalk, Untitled #6 from the ChimaTEK series, 2015. Mixed media collage on paper, 45 5/8 x 32 ¾ inches framed. Courtesy of the artist and Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects, New York, NY. David Rios Ferreira, Do things my own way darling, 2018. Gouache, screen printing ink, and collage on paper, 44 x 61 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Sanford Biggers, Quo Vadis?, 2019. Antique quilt, textiles, gold leaf, acrylic, spray paint, charcoal 43 x 34 inches. Framed: 47 ¼ x 38 ¼ inches. Image courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY and Aspen, CO. Photo: Stefan Hagen.

 

Pictured above and at top: Figuring the Floral, Middle Gallery Installation. From left to right: Cecile Chong, EL DORADO - The New Forty Niners, 2019. Plastic, plaster, encaustic, fiberglass-reinforced resin. Approximately 16 feet in diameter. Courtesy of the artist. Lina Puerta, Broccoli Crop Workers (Farmworker Tapestries Series), 2017. Cotton and linen pulp; lace, velvet, sequined fabrics, Aztec (Otomi) embroidered collar, trims, appliqués, velvet ribbon, fake fur, feathers, gouache and chains. 41 x 46 inches, Courtesy of the artist. Saya Woolfalk, Elements from a Cabinet of Anticipation, 2019. Mixed media, paper, beads, plastic, fabric. 5 works: 24 x 10 x 8 inches each. Courtesy of the artist and Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects, New York, NY. Diana Sofia Lozano, SubRosa, 2019. Foam, aqua resin, fiberglass, pigment, wax, and flocking, 24 x 18 x 18 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Stefan Hagen.

 

Pictured above: Figuring the Floral, South Gallery Installation. Left to right: Derrick Adams, Figure Walking into the Light 24, 2018. Acrylic paint, pencil, and fabric on paper. 24 x 18 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Abigail DeVille, And the Migrants Kept Coming…, 2019. Assemblage, bricolage, mannequins, heirlooms, accumulated debris, Dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artist. Nicole Awai, Vista 9: Flashback – Now You See Me Pounce!, 2016, Acrylic paint, nail polish, resin, molded plastic form, bubble wrap, polyester netting, construction foam, metal angle line, graphite and ink on synthetic paper. Courtesy of the artist and Lesley Heller Gallery, New York, NY. Alexandria Smith, Procession to the Rooting Place, 2013 Acrylic, glitter and contact paper on panel, 48 x 48 inches. Courtesy of the artist and LMAKgallery. Photo: Stefan Hagen.


Pictured above: Katherine Toukhy, For Nadia Murad, 2018, Paper, acrylic, watercolor, 37 x 19 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Stefan Hagen.


Pictured above: Ebony G. Patterson, reach…, 2018, cast glass, synthetic, silk and dried flowers, jewelry, in powder coated steel case, Dimensions variable, approx. 20 x 30 x 4 inches, series of 10 unique variants. Courtesy of Carolina Nitsch, NY.


Pictured above: Derrick Adams, Figure Walking into the Light 24, 2018, acrylic paint, pencil, and fabric on paper, 24 x 18 inches. Courtesy of the artist.


Pictured above: Sanford Biggers, Quo Vadis?, 2019, antique quilt, textiles, gold leaf, acrylic, spray paint, charcoal, 43 x 34 inches, 47 1/4 x 38 1/4 inches framed. Private Collection, NY. Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen. Photo Credit: Object Studies.