Friday, Oct. 4, 2013
A Modern Hair Study: Tara Bogart, Hair: Demitra Copoulos, and, Adornment: Nicholas Grider
Hours: Thursday-Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. and by appointment
September 27, 2013 to November 17, 2013
Opening Reception with the artists: 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, September 27
In many cultures, the imagined sexual allure of female hair requires that it be hidden from public view. Orthodox Jewish women, for example, traditionally wear headscarves or wigs. Catholic nuns and Muslim women also cover their hair.
If Wisconsin-based artist Tara Bogart’s A Modern Hair Study is evidence, then it is true: the expressive qualities of hair are potent. But in this series of oval-shaped images of the backs of young women’s heads and naked shoulders, it is not only the tender and seductive elements of hair that are revealed, but a much broader palette of mood, self-definition and emotional states. Disheveled or dyed, pinned or pony-tailed, clipped or overgrown, each image encapsulates how identity is truly a dance of willful self-styling in sync with rogue acts of nature. The tender contrasts of hair and pale skin against neutral backgrounds render these studies as almost precious documents of pedestrian beauty. Like pressed butterflies, the images index the infinite gestures of human individuality within the fleeting blossom of youth.
The work in Adornment comes from wondering about the line where decoration stops being decoration and starts to serve another purpose, in this case to obscure or possibly even muzzle and blindfold a human head.” Decoration is often thought of as something entirely innocent, but Grider is interested in what impulses fall behind the need to decorate or adorn something or someone and the extremes to which those impulses can lead.