Aesthetics have long subsisted on transmuting the sacred into the iconic, but a new show at Garis & Hahn reinvigorates this relation with a mixed media exhibition that rides the slippage between the two. Opening on September 11, SACRED/ICONIC is a two-person show of new work by Andrea Mary Marshall and Lucas Grogan that will feature paintings, photographs and a performative video by Marshall, as well as a selection of drawings, embroidered tapestries and quilts by Grogan. United by their use of narrative to explore the construction of identity and self in respect to the Other, these two unique bodies of work examine the way reverence is visually portrayed in the concepts of the sacred and the iconic.
For the Australia-based Lucas Grogan, appropriation of diverse cultural motifs, patterns and design is used as a means to comment on the shared identities found across a broad spectrum f human experiences. He marries these visual themes in personal narratives, employing a compare and contrast approach that seeks to examine broader cultural conditions and hybridity.
Through his work’s strong graphic sense, often drawn in ink or sewn freehand on cloth, Grogan labors to expose the commonalities he finds in typically unassociated aesthetics, a mix of the sacred and profane.
Andrea Mary Marshall’s newest body of work delves into a series of the highly stylized, multimedia self-portraits for which she has become well known. Marshall explores iconography, identity, and the binary self by targeting two iconic figures from Japan and the United States: the Geisha, an apogee of femininity and beauty, as well as artistry and skill, and the rock-n-roll icon Elvis, the embodiment of rebel-cool and individualistic freedom. Playing the role of both male and female icons in this series of gender-bending, anachronistic, and genre-mashing works of self-portraiture and performance, Marshall explores the way icons are built via cultural mythologizing and how the construction of the self is framed within a similar context.
SACRED/ICONIC opens Wednesday, September 11, 2013 with an artist’s reception from 6 to 8pm. The exhibition will be on view September 11–October 19, 2013 at Garis & Hahn (263 Bowery, Lower East Side, Manhattan).