Exhibition Dates: July 21, 2015 - August 15, 2015

Reception: Thursday, July 23, 6 - 8 pm

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The Painting Center is pleased to present Misconnections a group exhibition of works by the Indiana University MFA Painting candidates. In this age of image and information saturation, the depth and value of experience is often exchanged for a one-dimensional existence. There is a premium set on how many connections a person possesses, and on visibility, but not necessarily on substance. This imbalance begs the question of whether the connections we make between ourselves and our surrounding world are meaningful, or just replacements for what is truly genuine. The immediacy and abundance of information causes images and attitudes to converge in unexpected ways, and leads to a reality filled with connections that are often flawed and disjointed. The Indiana University MFA Painting candidates are exploring the gaps in relationships, comprehension, and experiences that are a result of these misconnections. 

Ours is a world perceived in fragments. It can lead to mistrust or apprehension, but it can also lead to humor and fulfillment, and occasionally to sublime inspiration. Greg Watson is one of several concerned with the psychological disconnection experienced between self and surroundings. He synthesizes unique forms and painted shapes to address fictional fragmentations between historical accuracy and fantasy. Joseph Kameen creates work that attempts to fill the gaps left by increasingly abandoned mythologies, using fantasy and humor to tease apart the edges of contemporary society’s existential crises. Corey Lamb combines personae and archetypes from history, religion, and popular culture within his paintings in order to bridge the gap between the divide resulting from a modern reconfiguration of self in a technologically overrun era. Tyler Wilkinson’ s work attempts to make connections between racial depictions of yore with today’s more implicit repackagings in the hopes of debunking the mystery of inequity. Sul-Jee Scully invents narratives in which the intensity of human emotion of teenage years are examined concurrently with unplaceable feelings of disengagement. Anna Buckner’ s vibrant paintings combine the goddess figure with the concept of quilting, examining the roles of women within both religious and domestic scopes. Madeline Winter draws upon memories of family to explore the rift one can experience through cultural misunderstanding. Ekatarina Vanovskaya uses childhood memories to create paintings that enable her to escape the present and immerse herself in longforgotten secrets. Caleb Knodell’ s “frescolike” paintings deals with wrangling subconscious imagery and atmospheric energy that relates to underlying hidden nostalgia. 

Another group of artists, most of whom are committed to working from direct observation, are concerned with connections of self with the physical world and with tangible relationships. Greg Burak utilizes purposefully obscured narratives to approximate the anxiety that arises from uncertainty. Jordan Kornreich creates still life paintings of mundane and commonplace objects in order to create a dialogue that deals with the transitory circumstances of life. Taylor Leaman creates paintings with Uglowesque attention and detail in order to highlight seemingly insignificant natural elements that are typically taken for granted. Kaitlin Dodds explores a loss of interaction between people and their surrounding world, integrating cliche homey patterns and landscape elements to illustrate a life of suffocating domesticity. Lindsay Hall’ s delicate paintings on mylar deal with the connection of the internal human body to the natural outside world, and how those two environments change and influence each other to create a hybrid nature of systems and organisms. Autumn Bussen looks to slow down subconscious data overload by enacting a calm and exploratory painting process focusing on surface and mark making.  With improvements in technology allowing for constant interaction, it is ironic that the world feels disconnected now more than ever. This spectrum of sources, both real and imagined, that are utilized by the artists are gateways into examining this disconnection and its place within the contemporary art world.

Artists Include: Greg Watson, Joseph Kameen, Corey Lamb, Tyler Wilkinson, Sul-Jee Scully, Anna Buckner, Madeline Winter, Ekatarina Vanovskaya, Caleb Knodell, Greg Burak, Jordan Kornreich, Taylor Leaman, Kaitlin Dodds, Lindsay Hall and Autumn Bussen.