My Dear Friend, Time, an installation by Ellen (Jing) Xu

You are here

Material Performance: Part II

Submitted on October 20, 2017 - 12:58pm
Material Performance exhibition at Jacob Lawrence Gallery


November 8 – December 9, 2017
Jacob Lawrence Gallery

Can painting and sculpture be time-based arts? The pieces in Material Performance transform as they are exhibited, taking up the forces that continually shape and reshape matter. This two-part exhibition brings together artistic practices that investigate the behavior of materials and the lexicon of their movement, extending the legacies of kinetic art and process-based artworks. The first part showed the most recent work of artists beginning their second year in the MFA program at the School of Art + Art History + Design. This second part of Material Performance gathers the work of alumni, faculty, and other artists.

Material Performance is organized by Emily Zimmerman, Director of the Jacob Lawrence Gallery. Please use the hashtags #MaterialPerformance and #BeTheJake when tagging the exhibition in social media.


All are free, open to the public, and take place in the Gallery.


Thursday, November 9, 6:30–9pm

Jono Vaughan: Dyeing to Draw Performance

Friday, December 1, 7:30–9pm (doors open at 7pm), more information + RSVP link

Join us for a reception and performance of Jono Vaughan’s Dyeing to Draw, featuring stylist Keri Scherbring and Claire Cowie. In a performance that highlights the material transformations that we enact on bodies through dyes, Cowie will have her hair dyed purple + blue and cut in the gallery, where the dyed hair will create a drawing informed by Scherbring's movements as she completes the haircut.

Margie Livingston: Artel performance

Saturday, December 9, 1:30–3pm, start/end point information + RSVP link

Join us for Artel, a participatory performance in which six people drag a painting across campus using an artist-made harness, expanding the gesture of painting from solitary and private to public and collaborative. Inspired by Ilya Repin’s painting, Burlaks on the Volga, the title comes from the name of semi-formal associations for craft, artisan, and light industrial cooperatives formed during the Russian Empire and Soviet Union. To be a member of an artel, all that was required was the capacity and willingness to work. Drawing on a history of performative dragging sited in the street by artists such as William Pope L., Francis Alÿs, Papo Colo, and Christian Marclay, Artel will reflect on collective effort, the violence of production, and chance.


Each of the artists' pieces changes over the duration of the exhibition — by growing, mutating, and decaying — often addressing the materiality of the Gallery. Material Performance deals in the kinds of material experimentation that artists continuously undertake in their practice. The exhibition includes the work of:

Nola Avienne (MFA 2007)

Avienne is a Seattle-based artist inspired by anatomy, chemistry, and earth science. Her work has developed through the investigation and negotiation of the tensions between art and science, chaos and order, humor and discomfort. Avienne has an MFA in Fibers from the University of Washington and a BFA from Otis Art Institute of Parsons School of Design. She is a recipient of the 4Culture Individual Artist Project Grant and the Artist Trust GAP Grant. Her work is included in the Washington State Art Collection, King County Public Art Collection, City of Sammamish Arts Collection, and the Seattle City Light Portable Works Collection.

Rebecca Farr

Farr lives and works in Los Angeles, California, and is represented by Klowden Mann Gallery, Los Angeles. Her most recent solo show there, Out of Nothing, displayed studies of Farr’s personal family mythology and the duality of Western cultural inheritance as it relates to embodiment. Farr’s recent residencies include The Ark: Center for Interdisciplinary Experimentation at Les Laboratories Aubervilliers, Paris, in the summer of 2017, and a 2015 residency at Kaus Australis in Rotterdam. Farr has exhibited in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Houston, Istanbul, Rotterdam, and the Pacific Northwest. Her work is held in collections nationally and internationally, and she recently completed two years as a faculty artist in the education department at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art where she has developed a youth driven public works program. Rebecca is the founder of CREATE/ACTION, an artist driven community organizing collective based in Los Angeles.

Leon Finley

Finley is an interdisciplinary artist based in Seattle, Washington. Born in 1987 in Seattle as Sonia Finley, he spent 12 years on the East Coast before returning to the Northwest in 2016. His work crosses over performance, sculpture, and drawing and comes out of one fundamental presupposition: our bodies are the only way we have of understanding ourselves and everything that is not ourselves; it is through our body that we perceive and produce, it is what everything comes out of and where everything goes into. His work is concerned with interdependency, the relationships between all kinds of bodies (human, object, architecture, sound, etc.) and the way that things become themselves in relation to other things. Finley received his BFA from Cooper Union in 2009 and his MFA in Sculpture from Yale in 2012. He was the recipient of the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Trust Prize in 2009, the Blair Dickinson Memorial Prize, the Dan David Prize Scholarship in 2012, and was a finalist for The Henry Art Gallery Brink Award in 2017. Finley is a member of the artist run collective gallery, SOIL, in Seattle. He has shown work around New York and Seattle and has performed in venues such as the Whitney Museum of American Art and Movement Research. Finley has taught at Cooper Union, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Montclair State University.

Perry Hall

Hall approaches painting as a time-based medium similar to choreography or performing music. His artworks, which integrate painting and filmmaking, are created by using natural dynamic forces (turbulence, thermodynamics, magnetism, gravity, chemical reactions) instead of any digital processes. Hall's work has been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions at the Neue National Gallerie, Berlin; Artists Space in New York; the Centre FRAC in Orleans, France; Pekin Fine Arts, Beijing, China; The Tokyo Art Fair; The Williams College Museum of Art (solo exhibition, 2006); and the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York. He has lectured on his work at a variety of cultural institutions including Columbia University in New York, The University of Berlin School of The Arts, The Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles, and The University of Central London. Hall has received press in a diverse range of media including The Huffington Post, Flashart, Wired journalist Steve Silberman's blog at the Public Library of Science, Motherboard, Evolo Magazine (cover) as well as the Hollywood Reporter. Hall attended Bard College at Simon's Rock, Berklee College of Music in Boston, and the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Jason Hirata (BFA 2010)

Hirata was born in Seattle where he attended the University of Washington photography program and joined the curatorial collective, Tarl. He makes work on the contradictions of power and history. Hirata lives and works in New York.

Francesca Lohmann

Born 1986 in San Francisco, California, Lohmann currently lives and works here in Seattle, her home since 2009. She holds a BFA in Printmaking from the Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from Cornell University. Lohmann has exhibited at numerous venues in the Pacific NW and was a finalist for the 2017 Brink Award. Her work is concerned with material in time and circumstance, with boundaries, limits, points of contact, and being finite.

Amie McNeel, Associate Professor

McNeel's work communicates and marvels at the subtleties of the natural. Moving between sculptures crafted with wood, glass, clay, and steel, to delicate drawings and prints, McNeel creates a conversation between humans and the physical, organic world. She instructs at all levels, striving for excellence in the teaching of technical skills, research, and conceptual clarity. She has served as a member of the graduate faculty and as the MFA candidate thesis adviser. She is an active member of 3D4M: ceramics + glass + sculpture and has worked closely with colleague Mark Zirpel to develop glass and sculpture facilities within 3D4M. Most recently, McNeel was selected for the joint residency program at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center and Kohler Company in Sheboygan, WI, and the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, NY. McNeel has received several awards for her work and her teaching practice, including, most recently, the Hermine Pruzan Faculty Fellowship and the Milliman Endowment for Faculty Excellence Award.

Robert Rhee

Rhee was born on a Friday. His parents are both Korean immigrants whose American names start with S. He has an older brother and a much older half-sister from his father's first marriage in Korea, who, for some time, he knew only as his piano teacher. His father's mother lived on Roosevelt Island for nine years and had a Casio Keyboard with preset songs of which his favorite was Ave Maria. He was a Born-Again Christian from when he was twelve until he was sixteen. He grew up in a house with sixteen doors. His mother owns a jewelry store and has perfect teeth. His mother's mother harvests herbs in her local park which is against the law. His father played Kim Jong-Il twice on Late Night with Conan O'Brien and once for a Geico commercial that never aired.

Jenny Sabin (BA/BFA 1998)

Sabin is an architectural designer whose work is at the forefront of a new direction for 21st century architectural practice — one that investigates the intersections of architecture and science and applies insights and theories from biology and mathematics to the design of material structures. Sabin is the Arthur L. and Isabel B. Wiesenberger Associate Professor in the area of Design and Emerging Technologies and the newly appointed Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Architecture at Cornell University where she established a new advanced research degree in Architectural Science with concentration in Matter Design Computation. She is principal of Jenny Sabin Studio, an experimental architectural design studio based in Ithaca and Director of the Sabin Design Lab at Cornell AAP, a trans-disciplinary design research lab with specialization in computational design, data visualization and digital fabrication. Sabin’s collaborative research — including bio-inspired adaptive materials and 3D geometric assemblies — has been funded substantially by the National Science Foundation with applied projects commissioned by diverse clients including Nike Inc., Autodesk, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, the American Philosophical Society Museum, the Museum of Craft and Design, the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, and the Exploratorium. Sabin holds degrees in ceramics and interdisciplinary visual art from the University of Washington and a master of architecture from the University of Pennsylvania where she was awarded the AIA Henry Adams first prize medal and the Arthur Spayd Brooke gold medal for distinguished work in architectural design, 2005. Sabin was awarded a Pew Fellowship in the Arts 2010 and was named a USA Knight Fellow in Architecture. In 2014, she was awarded the prestigious Architectural League Prize for Young Architects and was named the 2015 national IVY Innovator in design. Recently, Architectural Record’s national Women in Architecture Awards selected her for the 2016 Innovator in Design. She has exhibited nationally and internationally including in the acclaimed 9th ArchiLab titled Naturalizing Architecture at FRAC Centre, Orleans, France and most recently as part of Beauty, the 5th Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial. Currently, her work is on view in the exhibition Imprimer Le Monde at the Centre Pompidou. Her work has been published extensively including in the New York Times, The Architectural Review, Azure, A+U, Metropolis, Mark Magazine, 306090, American Journal of Pathology, Science, and Wired Magazine. She co-authored Meander, Variegating Architecture with Ferda Kolatan, 2010. Her book titled LabStudio: Design Research Between Architecture and Biology co-authored with Peter Lloyd Jones was published in July 2017. This year, Sabin won the internationally acclaimed MoMA & MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program with her submission, Lumen.

Jono Vaughan

Vaughan holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts in New York City and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of South Florida in Tampa. From 2009–2012 she worked as a Production Assistant at Graphicstudio where she helped create works for Alex Katz, Christian Marclay, Teresita Fernandéz, and many others. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally in both solo and group exhibitions, including the recent exhibitions MOTHA and Chris E. Vargas Present: Trans Hirstory in 99 Objects at the Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, and We the People at the Minnesota Museum of American Art. She is the Betty Bowen Award recipient for 2017 and will be exhibiting new works from her Project 42 series at the Seattle Art Museum in 2018. Vaughan has been investigating the relationship between hair and gender identity since 2009 through drawings, paintings, prints, installations, and performances.

Mark Zirpel, Associate Professor

Zirpel describes his work as multidisciplinary, driven by ideas and context. It is physical in its materiality and conceptually insistent. It is sculptural, installation-based, and kinetic. His work often explores a convergence between art and science. It is this quality of inquiry, a way of investigating the world, that is at the heart of his studio methodology. Zirpel’s work crosses media boundaries in its determination to address meaning. His work has been featured at numerous galleries including William Traver Gallery in Seattle, WA; Bullseye Gallery in Portland, OR; Kinetica Art Fair in London, UK; and it has appeared in Glass Magazine. He was awarded the Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship where he explored collections of scientific apparati related to observation and measurement, time keeping, terrestrial and celestial navigation, electricity and magnetism. In 3D4M: ceramics + glass + sculpture, Zirpel has and continues to develop university facilities to support glass and sculpture teaching along with his colleague Amie McNeel.