2021, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Alicia Smith, Apparitions, co-curated with Clare Britt, Brooklyn, NY
2020, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Mónica Palma, Tianguis, Brooklyn, NY
2020, Monaco, Bite the Hand, St. Louis, MO
2020, Ortega y Gasset Projects, (Skirt) Rachel Klinghoffer, Suspended in my masquerade, co-curated with Zahar Vaks, Brooklyn, NY (Brooklyn Rail Review)
2019, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Ben Pederson, Some Stuff You Forgot About, Brooklyn, NY (NY Times Review)
2018, Ortega y Gasset Projects (The Skirt), Jim Osman: Saxon Corner, Brooklyn, NY
2017, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Padma Rajendran: Among Nines (co-curated), Brooklyn, NY
2017, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Rick Briggs: (I) Pine, (co-curated), Brooklyn, NY (NY Times Highlight)
2016, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Ortega 100: Benefit Exhibition (120 artists exhibited), Brooklyn, NY
2016, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Mónica Palma: Wish Me Good Luck, Brooklyn, NY (Art in America Review)
2015, Ortega y Gasset Projects, Love Child, Brooklyn, NY (New York Observer Highlight)
A solo exhibition of works by Alicia Smith
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos and Clare Britt
October 16 - November 21, 2021
Opening : October 16, 1-6pm
Short performance: October 16, 5pm
Ortega y Gasset Projects is pleased to present a solo presentation of Alicia Smith’s work titled Apparitions curated by Eleanna Anagnos and Clare Britt. Smith’s work uses the abject and sublime to investigate the tension between greed and reverence and its impact on the environment, as well as our relationship to the female body. Through these processes she dissolves romanticized tropes that deny indigenous women their complexity, while at the same time demonstrating their beauty and strength. Being of mixed race heritage her relationship to the land and her body is complicated and something she unpacks through her work with the guidance of her ancestors.
In Smith’s words:
The Great Mother archetype makes her appearance during times of apocalypse as a warning of on coming devastation and as a promise that she will steward life back through. At OyG, Smith presents four tapestries representing Annunciation, Nativity, Crucifixion, and Resurrection. A fifth and final tapestry, Coronation, will be created by Smith during her performance on October 16, 2021. In her timely presentation and performance, all five tapestries will evoke feelings of hope and assurance. The history of our planet is marked by periods when life itself staggered toward oblivion. Yet every time it emerged again victorious, though transformed. “Apparitions” is an exhibition about these tran sitional periods told through omens of the archetypal Great Mother. Part warning of impending cata clysm and part assurance of survival. A strange sort of optimism and in the anthropocene, a plea for change.
When Juan Diego came to Tepeyac and saw the Virgin Mary, she appeared to him as an indigenous woman and spoke to him in Nahuatl. She commanded him to fill his tilmatli with roses from the hill and take them to the friar for proof of her identity. He did as instructed and when he let the flowers fall from his garment onto the chapel floor, her image was emblazoned on cloth. In this same spirit I have created four pieces which capture the miraculous manifestations and evolutionary moments in our planet’s life. The imagery shifts back and forth between the ancient and the present, demonstrating how it all has arrived to meet us here. Each tilmatli was hand dyed with cochineal, a beetle whose life cycle revolves around the nopal cactus and who were coveted by the Aztecs for the striking red dye it produces.
“Annunciation”, the first piece and first Joyful Mystery, marks the moment language is given to an internal knowl edge, the moment a pregnancy is confirmed. In this tilmatli I show stromatolite formations, mini reefs where cya nobacteria were first formed around hydrothermal vents. This is the beginning of life as we know it on our planet. There are two volcanos, representing Popocatépetl “Smoking Mountain” and Iztaccíhuatl “White Woman”, and above them in a frieze another sits, Nexpayantla “Place where the ash crumbled”, their volcanic ancestor.
“Nativity”, the second piece and third Joyful Mystery, marks the birth of angiosperms, or flowering plants and with them the formation of all fruits and vegetables. In this piece I place a Magnolia flower, bud and seed pod in the frieze. Magnolias are one of the first flowering plants to evolve on our planet. In Nahuatl they are called Yol loxochitl “Heart Flower” and used to assist physical, emotional, and spiritual matters of the heart. Beneath it is a chinampa, a traditional Aztec floating garden, with Bonpland Willows or Ahuehuetl “Water Drums”, Corn, Beans and Squash. Beneath them swims Axolotl salamanders which were once abundant in Lake Texcoco but now are endangered in Xochimilco. Above it all flies two vampire bats, representing the story of Xochiquetzal, who was bitten on the vulva by a vampire bat while she slept in paradise and when her blood spilled onto the earth (the first menstruation) all flowers emerged.
“Crucifixion”, the third piece and fifth Sorrowful Mystery, marks the impact of the asteroid on Chicxulub in the Yucatan in Mexico and the death of the dinosaurs. In the image you see a crocodile, a species present at the time of the dinosaurs, jumping out of an estuary to capture a water bird, another living relic of prehistory, in flight. To gether, they create a crucifix, the flexing of the surface of the water reminiscent of a crater.
“Resurrection”, the fourth piece and first Glorious Mystery, marks the rise of the mammals following the cata clysm that wiped out 75% of life on this planet. The Juramaima, an ancient shrew, burrowed underground and scavenged for centuries and this resilient being is what all placental animals on this planet have evolved from.
“Coronation”, is the 5th piece, which will be created during the performance. In it I will walk into the gallery dressed in white as “La Llorona” plays and step onto a cloth that is covering a layer of roses on the floor. As I smash the petals into the fabric an image of Coatlicue, the Aztec Earth Goddess will appear. When I am finished, I will hang the garment on the wall and invite the viewers to leave an offering, gratitude, and pray to the land itself.
- Alicia Smith, 2021
Alicia Smith (She/her) (b. 1990, Waukegan, IL) is a Xicana artist and activist. She received her BFA in Fine arts with an emphasis in Contemporary Sculpture and Printmaking from the University of Oklahoma and her MFA at the School of Visual Arts. Her work is currently on view at Museo Cabanas, Guadalahara, Mexico and Accola Griefen, NYC. Smith has shown at Pulse, Miami, FL and at Untitled, San Francisco. She currently resides in Oklahoma City, Okalahoma. www.aliciasmith.work | @aliciasmithart
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos
December 5- December 20, 2020
Ortega y Gasset Projects
Ortega y Gasset Projects is pleased to present a solo presentation of Mónica Palma’s work curated by Eleanna Anagnos. This is Palma’s second solo exhibition with the gallery. Palma’s labor-intensive, large works explore Pre-Columbian culture, psychoanalysis, alchemy, ritual, divination, and healing. Spanning different genres and media, Mónica Palma employs drawing, textile design, painting, sculpture and performance to negotiate the breach between her Mexican heritage and her experience living in the US.
Tianguis is a large floor drawing, an evolving project, that will take form over a period of weeks as the artist gathers ingredients from different vendors in the neighborhood, macerating them into pigments, rubbing and pouring them into the surface. Palma will also utilize materials sent by her mother and sister who live in Mexico City. The project is a tribute to those whose wisdom and labor put food on our tables.
Palma discusses the project: For once, I want to conclusively stay on the ground, begin there and end there. I might walk or take the R train from Ortega y Gasset Projects to 45th street and 5th Avenue. I’ve been in Sunset Park many times looking for ingredients, I know some of the grocery stores, not by name yet, but I know what they carry. I’ve seen nopales, I’ve seen fresh aromatic herbs, I go there, order in Spanish, my message is received without a trace of equivocality. Some vendors in Mexico keep their vegetables on the floor, close to the soil where they grew. I don’t know if they do it out of convenience or out of attachment. I’ve seen seeds and flower rugs in Humantla, Tlaxcala – what a celebration, what order! But what am I celebrating? Is this even a celebration? I’ll be a quadruped or a baby crawling, a body twisting, and kneeling.
The word Tianguis is derived from the Nahuatl word for an open-air market.
Mónica Palma was born and raised in Mexico City, she studied visual art at the Universidad Veracruzana in Xalapa, Veracruz. In 2008 she received her MFA in Painting and Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has been living and working in Brook- lyn since 2008. Her work has been shown at TSA (NYC), 245 Varet Street (NYC), Ortega y Gasset Projects (NYC), the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Kansas City), Soloway Gallery (NYC), Underdonk Gallery (NYC) and Essex Flowers (NYC).
Suspended in My Masquerade
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos and Zahar Vaks
February 2020 through May 2020
Ortega y Gasset Projects, The Skirt
To open the new year The Skirt at Ortega Y Gasset Projects is thrilled to present Suspended in my Masquerade a solo exhibition of new work by multi-disciplinary artist Rachel Klinghoffer. Melding personal ephemera; used lingerie and designer footwear, costume jewelry, religious relics and Hanukkah decorations with old paint brushes, children’s toys, souvenirs and studio refuse, she creates prismatic, self-narrative vessels investigating nostalgia, ritual, memory, and the act of remembering.
Suspended in My Masquerade, referencing a lyric from Springsteen’s Growin’ Up, investigates the complex rituals surrounding memory and sentimental objects. Driven by a strong emotional connection to her family, friends and community, Klinghoffer pays homage to the past by literally suspending those personal items in time and space, imploring viewers to excavate. Simultaneously organic and alien-like, her sculptural forms are covered, surface textures obliterated and then exquisitely adorned with small embedded objects of personal significance. Surface colors reference the Romantics, particularly the Hudson River School with its emphasis on the subtleties and range of light. Her laboriously manipulated sculptural shapes hint at everyday objects including pre-loved sneakers, repurposed precious and semiprecious stones including rubies, sapphires, emeralds, even diamonds. Closer inspection allows for explanation of the greater meanings designated to each item. Materials lists read like memories, items like “one of the vintage boots I wore all through undergrad”, and “coral necklace from uncle”.
This new series of work incorporates the craft of memory glass-making into the sculptures, a popular activity for girls during the time of Klinghoffer’s own bat mitzvah celebrations. Titles of the works are pulled from the lyrics of her playlists. As with her work, she pulls from what already exists in the world. Individual pieces take their names from The Grateful Dead, Talking Heads, Beatles, Tom Petty, Drake, Paul Simon, Phish, TV on the Radio, and so on. By repurposing materials, making and remaking them into paintings and sculptures, she prompts a reimagining of uses for these relic-like objects. Articles reflect the artist’s personal connection to femininity, craft-making, Judaism, romance, pushing the definition of painting. Through time, the items become specimens, icons. They are poked, prodded, stained, sprayed, stroked, rubbed, dipped, then pulled, torn, cracked open and broken apart making up and becoming the new work.
Rachel Klinghoffer lives and works in South Orange NJ. She received her MFA in Painting with honors from Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and a BFA in Painting, Visual and Critical Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has exhibited with Zero Zero, LA; Ballast Projects, Alt Esc, BK; SPRING/BREAK, Cuevas Tilleard, NY; The Willows, NY; Fjord Gallery, PA; Interface Gallery, CA; Tiger Strikes Asteroid, PA; Ms. Barber’s, LA; Trestle Projects, BK; NURTURE Art, BK; Thomas Jaeckel Gallery, NY; Projekt722, BK; NARS Foundation, NY; Samson Projects, MA. Her work has been featured in the Brooklyn Rail, New American Paintings, Hyperallergic, Title Magazine, Vice, and Observer Arts named her one of the most promising names on the scene.
Read the review in The Brooklyn Rail, here.
Read the review in Creative Boom, here.
Read the review in Flaunt.com, here.
Some Stuff You Forgot About
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos
January 5 - February 3, 2019
Catalog Launch: February 3, 2019
Presenting in both the main gallery and The Skirt (OyG’s space for site-specific work), Pederson creates an immersive installation that reflects the depth and breadth of his practice. In The Skirt, Pederson creates a “reality-tunnel” that reflects the totality of his perceived experiences, both conscious and unconscious. Large-scale hanging sculptures form a dense invitation to enter Pederson’s universe, disassembled and reassembled from earlier works of wood, paint, and childhood ephemera. In the main gallery, 28 Shapes Later is an investigation into the artist’s changing views on the Transcendent vs. Immanent aspects of his process that begs the question: does creativity come from above or within? Fourteen horizontal, balanced rods hang from the ceiling and spin in relation to air movement, casting shifting shadows. These are flanked by tree-like vertical sculptures on custom pedestals that contour to the sculpture’s base. Speckled with bright, sometimes, fluorescent paint, the sculpture’s surfaces unify to create a neutral tone when viewed from afar. Twenty-eight corresponding watercolor silhouettes - realized from a meditative state - act as a visual key that links the family of forms in the exhibition. Pederson likens his practice to childhood memories of sifting through a junk drawer, hot glue gun in hand. Disparate, seemingly unrelated ephemera is united and form new, hybrid connections. This points to the more prevalent, essential “junk drawer” occupying his heart and mind: a sea of experiences, dreams, failures, and triumphs that he sifts through to create meaning out of the absurdity of life.
Ben Pederson (born 1979, Grand Rapids, MI) is a Brooklyn-based artist. He shows his work locally and nationally. Pederson is the recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2018); a Yaddo Fellow, Saratoga Springs, NY (2015); the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture residency in Skowhegan ME (2013); and the Materials For The Arts Residency in Queens, NY (2013). He received his M.F.A. in Sculpture from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (2007) and a B.A. in Studio Art from Aquinas College (2003).
Read the review in the New York Times, here.
Read the review in Art Spiel, here.
Co-Curated by the Co-Directors at Ortega y Gasset Projects
September 9 - October 1, 2017
Among Nines is Rajendran’s debut solo exhibition in New York and presents work made as the artist-in-residence at Ortega y Gasset Projects. Working on fabric, Rajendran applies resist and dye to achieve both crisp edges that reflect her drawings and faded colors that infer atmospheric haze. Her diverse imagery includes food, domestic tools, architecture, landscape, and abstract patterning that all synthesize into a “story cloth”: a traditional mode of narrative through textile. Rajendran presents her fabric works in the context of ceramic pieces as installation that activate peripheral spaces and the floor of the gallery.
Rajendran’s work comes from an interior place of living two cultural lives and manifests from digging through the past of personal monuments and archived histories. Gathering these symbols authenticates the forgotten and resurrects it to be experienced again. It is a path to observe an alternate unfolding of events and offers a new ontology. Her imagery is talking to the ritualistic narratives specific to her shell and shelter. Recollecting these souvenirs and events, she embraces the idea of the woven to create images that instigate psychological elasticity yet are still bound by opposing threads.
Padma Rajendran was born in Klang, Malaysia. She received her BA from Bryn Mawr College in 2007 and received her MFA in Printmaking at Rhode Island School of Design in 2015. She currently lives and works in New York, NY. She has exhibited at the International Print Center New York, Kleinert James Center for the Arts (Woodstock, NY), the Strohl Art Center (Chautauqua, NY), the Warwick Museum of Art (Warwick, RI), and recently at Whitespace Gallery (Atlanta, GA).
Co-Curated by the Co-Directors at Ortega y Gasset Projects
April 22 - May 21, 2017
Ortega y Gasset Projects
This exhibition represents over twenty years of paintings by New York based artist, Rick Briggs. (I) Pine is an invitation into the ambiguities and slippages of abstraction and a survey of the hardest thing about painting… the first 20 or so years. Briggs’ work explores the physicality of paint through gesture and layering with the use of house-painting materials such as rags, paint sticks, and rollers.
These utilitarian items are presented in ways that often defy their intended purpose: collaged into paintings as evidence of play, exploration, and intuition. The detritus of a house-painter’s vocation are gathered and re-contextualized. Disks of dried paint peel from the bottom of near-empty paint cans or paint-caked rollers that are inserted through the painting’s surface. Mid-sized and small works explore the artist’s inexhaustible curiosity with the possibilities and processes of paintings. Large-scale paintings made by rolling, spraying, pouring or splashing the paint declare the body’s movements and remain as indexical moments of existence.
The frankness of the artist’s tools and techniques belies the purpose of a true idealist, a true believer, a true painter: the pursuit of freedom and the desire for mystery. In a Kierkegaardian way, freedom and mystery are in a suspended state of becoming. They are open-ended endeavors driven by an impulse, a curiosity or a longing.
Rick Briggs received a BFA from Tyler School of Art and a MFA from SUNY Purchase. He was a recipient of a Pollock-Krasner Fellowship (2012) and The Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship (2011). He has exhibited at Valentine Gallery, Sideshow Gallery, Yale University School of Art, Islip Art Museum, and Brooklyn Museum of Art.
Benefit Exhibition organized by Eleanna Anagnos
December 15, 2016
Ortega y Gasset Projects
Lauren Adams, Mike Ambron, Eleanna Anagnos, Hayley Anderson, Liz Atz, Emily Auchincloss, Damon Arhos, Lisha Bai, Jen Bandini, Michael Beggs, Michael Berryhill, Joshua Bienko, Rick Briggs, Clare Britt, Aimee Burg, Rachel Byrd, Lauren Cardenas, Kari Cholnoky, Rupa Chordia, Jennifer Coates, Sam Cockrell, Andy Cross, Rachel Debuque, Mark Dixon, Mark Joshua Epstein, Ash Ferlito, Heather Garland, Ashley Garrett, Kati Gegenheimer, Rubens Ghenov, Rachael Gorchov, Alyssa Gorelick, Alina Gregorian, Catherine Haggarty, Clay Hapaz, Emily Hass, EJ Hauser, Karen Heagle, Craig Hein, Jay Henderson, Eric Hibit, Fritz Horstman, Carrie Hott, Jackie Hoving, Will Hutnick, Akira Ikezoe, Liz Insogna, Sam Jablon, Emily Janowick, Layet Johnson, JULIACKS, Irena Jurek, Elsie Kagan, Lucy Kim, Hein Koh, Suzy Kopf, Dani Leventhal, Aubrey Levinthal, Katherine Mann, Rachel Mason, Patrick McElnea, Leeza Meksin, Larissa Mellor, Susan Metrican, Jeffry Mitchell, Ian Murphy, Mike Olin, Sheryl Oppenheim, Norm Paris, Liesl Pfeffer, Justin Plakas, Nikola Pottinger, Vivian Qin, Julie Ribeiro, Scott Robinson, George Rush, Netta Sadovsky, Naomi Safron Hon, Jen Shepard, Polly Shindler, Winnie Sidharta, Paul Simmons, Jered Sprecher, Michael Stickrod, Claire Stigliani, Amy Stober, Julie Torres, Hooper Turner, Denise Treizman, Zahar Vaks, Nichole Van Beek, Lee Vanderpool, Nick Van Zanten, Michael Veliquette, Andy Weber, Jenna Weiss, Lauren Whearty, Daniel Wilson, Sheilah Wilson, Kelly Worman, Karla Wozniak, Geo Wyeth, Sun You, Alex Zandi, Almond Zigmund, Kaini Zhou, and more!
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos
Ortega y Gasset Projects, The Skirt
November 5 -December 4, 2016
Using pigmented plaster, Osman creates Wall drawings that compress different kinds of space. The vessels that give these spaces form can be clear and tangible like architecture and furniture or symbolic like a flag or just formal -- a color. Combining these forms makes for odd arrangements that once started must be reconciled formally, all the while staying true to a notion of space that is convoluted, dense, and opaque yet somehow understood.
Jim Osman was born in New York City. He received his BA & MFA from Queens College (CUNY) in Flushing, NY where he studied with Tom Doyle, Mary Miss and Lawrence Fane. He has had solo exhibitions at Lesley Heller Workspace, Long Island University’s Kumbal Gallery and Dartmouth College. His work has been included in group shows at the Brooklyn Museum, Transmitter Gallery and University of Texas at San Antonio. Osman’s public sculptures have been shown at PULSE Miami, FL; Art Hamptons, NY; Sculpture Mile in Madison, CT. He received a NYFA Artist Fellowship in Craft/Sculpture in 2017. Mr.Osman teaches courses in three-dimensional design, sculpture and public art classes at Parsons School of Design. He lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
Eva and Adele, Anna Gaskell and Douglas Gordon, Nyeema Morgan and Mike Cloud, Rachel Dubuque and Justin Plakas, Maria Walker and Jonathan Allmaier, Carrie Moyer and Sheila Pepe, Jennifer Coates and David Humphrey
Curated by Eleanna Anagnos
June 12 - July 26, 2015
Ortega y Gasset Projects
Ortega y Gasset Projects presents Love Child, an exhibition curated by Eleanna Anagnos. Love Child highlights the dialogue and exchange that takes place when two creative people make something together. The show includes works by EVA & ADELE, Anna Gaskell and Douglas Gordon, Nyeema Morgan and Mike Cloud, Rachel Debuque and Justin Plakas, Maria Walker and Jonathan Allmaier, Carrie Moyer and Sheila Pepe, Jennifer Coates and David Humphrey.
Often, artists refer to their own work as their babies. When an artist has an established practice (as the artists in this exhibition do), the community is familiar with these births. Less familiar are the love children made between two working artists. They are seemingly outliers of an artist’s practice.
Unearthed, in this exhibition, they take center stage. When two creatives negotiate the process and metamorphosis of an object, a new author comes forth. The work is the physical manifestation of a harmonious connection, and dialogue between these couples. The negation of authorship, the generosity involved in the give and take process of an intimate collaboration, the trust, the work and the understanding required is worth celebrating.
While much of the work in the exhibition is bred of a politically-driven stance, all of the work is playful. “..the complete fusion in a praxis of two subjunctives, two subjunctives that metamorphose into a third; it is from this collusion that a new author emerges, an absent third person, invisible and beyond grasp, decoding the silence.” -from The Minds Eye by William S. Bouroughs and Brion Gysin
Eleanna Anagnos is an artist and curator based in Brooklyn, New York. She is interested in questions of space: what gets transmitted through it, how we perceive it, experience it and connect with it. By visually manipulating positive and negative space, her work challenges the viewer to pause, reflect and reconsider their sensory perception and preconceived notions of space. She has been with Ortega y Gasset Projects since May 2014. (BA Kenyon College; MFA Tyler School of Art)
Ortega y Gasset Projects is a gallery curated projects space in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn. Comprised of artists currently living in Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, and Tennessee, OyG operates a cross-country collective and an incubator for dialogue and artistic exchange.
Read the highlight in the Observer, here.
Read the highlight on Art List, here.