Installation of There is Another Sky
BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Artisan Series 2017 Grand Prize Winner Exhibition
VANESSA LAM | THERE IS ANOTHER SKY
Organized and curated by Artsy in collaboration with BOMBAY SAPPHIRE
Openhouse Gallery | 168 Bowery, New York June 7th – 17th, 2018
In December 2017 Vanessa Lam won the BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Artisan Series competition. As part of that award, Vanessa was given the opportunity for a one-person show in New York. “There Is Another Sky” is Vanessa’s first-ever exhibition in New York City and it will be on view at Openhouse Gallery from June 7th through June 17th, 2018.
Lam’s works explore the tension between urban and organic environments through mixed media, painting and collage. She uses mark-making and gestures to express a strong sense of movement, and her works are in dialogue with the history of abstract art, while also considering contemporary industry and urban renewal projects. Lam’s gestures are intentionally contrasting, combining hard-edged geometry with organic forms, splatters and elements of chance. Her works evolve out of conscious observations, shaped by the atmosphere around her.
The title of the exhibition draws on an Emily Dickinson poem of the same name and, according to Lam, it suggests “the existence of another mysterious place where the sky, forest and leaves behave differently from the physical universe that we know and see.” In Lam’s work, the sky is a recurring theme and suggests the pictorial space as another realm where viewers can enter her work and experience their everyday environment anew.
The central gallery space is occupied by a large installation, Despite What We Both Know (2018). This work is a construction of four interlocking wooden-framed panels with canvases draped on top of them, and it occupies the space between painting and sculpture.
Surrounding the installation, there are four mixed-media abstract paintings—the largest the artist has completed to date—and a series of collages, from 2016-2018. The collages are comprised of appropriated imagery and unexpected interplays of color, texture and depth. Some are installed on the wall, while others will be visible in a portfolio.