Heads Up by Judy Chicago utilizes cast and painted glass, bronze and ceramics as the primary support and medium for exploring a range of human emotions and behaviors. The thought-provoking sculptures and paintings seduce with their surfaces as a metaphor for human appearances, but challenge viewers to look closely at a person and go beyond skin deep.
David Richard Gallery will present Heads Up, the newest body of work by Judy Chicago in cast glass, bronze and ceramics that explores human emotions and behavior. The exhibition will be presented June 14 – July 26, 2014 with an opening reception on Saturday, June 14 from 2:00-5:00 PM and a gallery talk from 3:30 – 5:00 PM between Judy Chicago and Dr. Kathy Battista, a feminist scholar, writer, curator and Director, Contemporary Art, Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. A fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by Battista will accompany the exhibition. The gallery is located on 544 South Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501, phone 505-983-9555 in the Santa Fe Railyard Arts District.
Heads Up, by Chicago, is a thought-provoking study of human behavior. The work goes beyond feminist issues, embracing a wider audience and addressing a topic that ponders the human condition by connecting at a personal and individual level. The presentation includes a selection of cast glass and bronze sculptures, paintings on clear glass panels and watercolor studies on paper. Glass is the perfect medium for exploring a topic as diverse and complex as human emotions and behaviors, with its range of transparent and translucent properties. By painting the surface, glass can also become opaque, allowing no transmission of light or view inside, like a shield or mask. The sculptures, with their combinations of painted glass, cast bronze and applied metal furthers Chicago’s fascination with smooth and pristine surfaces, yet the facial expressions and content goes beyond the skin's surface. The painted glass panels provide a glimpse into facial expressions and the accompanying musculature and skeletal apparatus required to pull them off, like a medical rendering. However, that is just the physical analysis of the underlying cause or effect for the behavior. While we do not know the models for these sculptures or paintings, we can identify with their emotions of anger, disappointment and envy as they evoke a memory or distain for someone that we—the viewer—do know.
This exhibition is part of the year-long, nation-wide celebration of Judy Chicago's 75th birthday and a companion show to Local Color: Judy Chicago in New Mexico, curated by Merry Scully and opening June 6th at the New Mexico Museum of Art in Santa Fe. Local Color is paired with the recently opened and widely acclaimed exhibition at the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum, Chicago in L.A.: Judy Chicago's Early Work, 1962-1974, site of the permanent housing of Chicago's most well-known work, The Dinner Party.
Judy Chicago is an artist, writer, educator, collaborator and feminist who is not afraid to explore every artistic medium and communication device to speak on the behalf of and create opportunities for hearing women’s voices in the arts. Her multimedia artmaking practice has spanned over 50 years and included painting, drawing, sculpting and performing, using canvas, acrylic, watercolor, glass, bronze, photography and fireworks to name but a few media. Her intellectual impact influences the art world as well as numerous social, political and academic causes. Internationally recognized as a pioneer and defender of the rights of women and anyone else who feels powerless against those with power, she has received much critical acclaim for her artwork, writing and educational efforts with numerous reviews, publications, awards and honorary degrees. Chicago is best known for the Womanhouse project created with Miriam Schapiro in the 1970s, The Dinner Party, 1974-79, Birth Project, 1980-85, PowerPlay series, 1982-87, Holocaust Project, 1985-93 and her most recent work comprised of cast glass hands and heads.