BRURAL: Shattering Phenomena Super Storm Sandy, Chelyabinsk Meteorite is the third exhibition in the BRURAL series, founded and curated by New York artist and curator Irina Danilova. BRURAL was originally created by Project 59, Inc. to develop professional contacts between artists and curators from Brooklyn and UralRegion in Russia through the series of annual collaborative exhibitions. This year BRURAL expanded to the Bronx as part of the Bronx River Art Center’s Curatorial Practice Series, a collaboration between guest curators, artists and students in BRAC educational programs. Svetlana Shlyapnikova, art director of OkNo Gallery, the first gallery of contemporary art in Chelyabinsk, is the guest curator.
Featured artists, Alberto Bursztyn, Linda Cunningham, Alexander Danilov, Irina Danilova, Asya Dodina & Slava Polishchuk, Ed Herman, JudsoN, Jeff Kasper & Sophie Cooke, Rebecca Norton, Eric Pesso, Helena Schetinkina, Chad Stayrook, vydavy, Brett Wolfson-Stofko, Alena Zabolotina and Sergei Zhatkov, metaphorically interpret the experience of natural phenomena that traumatized both cities, New York and Chelyabinsk.
Alberto Bursztyn's installation with a rock pendulum drawing circles on sand reflects the "layers of sand covering streets, sidewalks and empty spaces in NYC’s southern neighborhoods". Scrolls with images of fallen trees by Linda Cunningham, ragged as if by the wind, relate to wood sculptures by Eric Pesso, made from fallen during the Sandy storm tree. judsoN’s media installation with texts about Superstorm Sandy and Chelyabinsk Meteorite unexpectedly catches an image of the viewer including him/her in the context. Mixed media works made of fragments of Sandy debris by Asya Dodina & Slava Polishchuk speak to the sharp shattering abstract paintings by Rebecca Norton. The vydavy artist duo’s video work explores the edges of communication between human beings and the ocean. The video work of Jeff Kasper & Sophie Cooke combines the image of raging water with the aesthetics of oceanographic science graphs marking the heights and depth of the flood. Chad Stayrook's model of a siren in the shape of a lighthouse stresses the state of emergency along with fragility and often ineffectiveness of warning efforts. Installation of paranormal sand dunes by Irina Danilova (as they were hit by fragments of meteorite), morph into hills of sand on the floor, creating obstructions in the audience’s way around the show as an imitation of Sandy’s aftermath.
Artists from Chelyabinsk are dealing with impressions from the meteorite fall. Spontaneous abstract works by Helena Schetinkina convey the swiftness and extemporaneity of the burst of a space object through the atmosphere. Alexander Danilov’s compositions are inspired by scientific diagrams describing the trajectory of the meteorite. Rescued fragments of the meteorite that exploded above Chelyabinsk look different through the eyes of two photo artists. Sergei Zhatkov is looking at them as creatures communicating with each other and with the viewer while Alena Zabolotina is interested in the unusual textures of outer space objects.
A documentary style applies to the works of two other artists. Ed Herman makes life size models of human figures as we see them on the streets. One of his series, “Homeless”, addresses the tragedy of those who lost their homes or had substantial property damages. Brett Wolfson-Stofko's photographs witness the evidence of Superstorm Sandy's aftermath.
Exhibition BRURAL: Shattering Phenomena Super Storm Sandy, Chelyabinsk Meteorite will be open from February 7th through March 1st 2014, at 305 East 140th Street (between Third and Alexander Avenues in the Bronx)
Opening reception: Friday, February 7, from 6pm to 9pm.
A Special Evening of Performance on Saturday, February 15th, from 6pm to 9pm, will commemorate the one-year anniversary of the Chelyabinsk Meteorite.