Eamon Ore-Giron’s (b. 1973, Tucson, AZ; lives and works Los Angeles, CA) practice blends a wide-range of visual styles, drawing from such diverse influences as Latin American Concrete Art, Italian Futurism, Russian Constructivism, the Mexican muralists, Amazonian tapestries, and pre-Columbian Peruvian gold artistry. In his abstract geometric paintings, Ore-Giron layers, combines, and manipulates simple shapes to create complex compositions that speak across cultures and temporalities. The bright colors and designs on expanses of raw linen bring to mind Moholy-Nagy’s paintings of the 1920s, which prominently featured similar unpainted grounds, but might just as well originate from Ore-Giron’s coming-of-age in Tucson, Arizona, an arid environment in which color always pops in the brown landscape. In 2020, Ore-Giron was a Presidential Visiting Artist, Anderson Collection at Stanford University. Recent museum acquisitions include the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Minneapolis Institute of Art, MN; and the Whitney Museum, New York, NY.
Joy Feasley (b. 1966, Buffalo, NY; lives and works Philadelphia, PA) combines painting and installation creating environments steeped in alternative belief systems (the occult, the Shaker religion, the dreamworld) that reinterpret ideas of the sublime, depicting nature as both ominous and life-affirming. Moving between abstraction and representation often in the same work, Feasley’s paintings incorporate sacred geometries as well as personal narratives. She often works collaboratively with her husband, Paul Swenbeck. In 2018, Feasley and Swenbeck created a large-scale environment for the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI, titled Out, Out, Phosphene Candle, and in 2021 they were commissioned by the Kohler to create restrooms based on elements of this exhibition for the museum’s new building.
Out, Out, Phosphene Candle, 2021
John Michael Kohler Arts Center and Sachs Program for Arts Innovation, University of Pennsylvania.
Essays by Karen Patterson and Lynda Brody, and notes by Paul Swenbeck.
In conjunction with the exhibition: Out, Out, Phosphene Candle at John Michael Kohler Arts Center, February – September, 2018
Jesse Harrod (b. South Africa; Lives and works in Philadelphia) explores embodiment, gender, and sexual identity through, sculpture, installation, video, and drawing. Harrod builds on herstories of 1970s feminist art to offer queer imaginations of the body, from the abject and the grotesque to the humorous. Their practice most centrally contributes to a broader collective effort to redefine the meaning of queer aesthetic form. Harrod is perhaps most renowned for embracing the material vernacular of macramé using synthetic fibers like paracord, a utility cord devised by the military in the making of parachutes now used for a range of purposes and available in a variety of colors. In 2021, Harrod was commissioned by the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI, to make a large sculpture in response to the Kohler’s vast holdings of Wisconsin self-taught artist, Eugene Von Bruenchenhein, an artist she first discovered while creating an exhibition at Fleisher/Ollman.
Molly Metz’s (b. 1992, Bethlehem, PA; lives and works in Philadelphia) multivalent paintings bring to mind the complexity of existence from the cellular to the astronomical, from the terrestrial to the aquatic, and the nooks and crannies in-between. Many of Metz’s works feature words and short phrases that bring humor into the picture. Tiny texts are often embedded within odd-shaped forms (cells, squiggles, gestures) with words occasionally so small that at first glance we might mistake them for thready bits of organic material. Adding to the depth of field of her already richly painted surfaces are collage elements that interact with painted grounds. Metz’s paintings sometimes hold secret surprises—extemporaneous and process-oriented sketches in paint and other media on the reverse of their supports. Metz received her MFA from Tyler School of Art in 2016. In June, 2021 she had her first solo show with Fleisher/Ollman: Close Closer. She has had a solo exhibition at Day Space, Philadelphia and has been included in group exhibitions at Fjord, Pilot Projects, Woodmere Art Museum, and Space 1026 (all in Philadelphia) and YUI Gallery, New York.
“There does exist a vernacular American tradition of wire sculpture and junkyard assemblage, but nothing comparable to the Wireman oeuvre’s rigid discipline, serialism, and non-objectivity.”
Brendan Greaves in Philadelphia Wireman, 2011
The Philadelphia Wireman sculptures were found abandoned in an alley off Philadelphia’s South Street on trash night in the late 1970s. Their discovery in a rapidly-gentrifying neighborhood, compounded with the failure of attempts to locate the artist, suggests that the works may have been discarded after the maker’s death. The entire collection totals approximately 1200 pieces (and a few small, abstract marker drawings, reminiscent both of Mark Tobey and J.B. Murry) and appears to be the creation of one artist. The dense construction of the work, despite a modest range of scale and materials, is singularly obsessive and disciplined in design: a wire armature or exoskeleton firmly binds a bricolage of found objects, including plastic, glass, food packaging, umbrella parts, tape, rubber, batteries, pens, leather, reflectors, nuts and bolts, nails, foil, coins, toys, watches, eyeglasses, tools, and jewelry. The enigmatic works by Philadelphia Wireman have been compared to Native American medicine bundles, African-American memory jugs, and African fetish objects. Over the course of the past four decades, this collection has come to be regarded as an important discovery in the field of self-taught and vernacular art. The works are in the collections of the American Folk Art Museum and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, among others.