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Exhibition Tour: Alice Channer, "Half-Life" at Lisa Cooley


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Lisa Cooley is very pleased to present Half-life, Alice Channer’s second solo exhibition with the gallery. In Half-life, fast and slow, object and subject, ancient and contemporary, horizontal and vertical, vertebrate and invertebrate both coalesce and separate to form a new, more singular body of work, including floor sculptures and framed digital prints on crepe de chine silk.

The works in Half-life propose alternative physical states and forms of embodiment. All of the works in the exhibition appear to be solid, but are made of unstable matter and parts that remain separate from each other; they have and could still pass through radical changes in state. Channer often begins by s t r e t c h i n g an object or material so that it blurs, distorts, and changes scale. In Granite and Concrete, images of molten lava are massively s t r e t c h e d beyond the height of the gallery ceiling and sliced h o r i z o n t a l l y , flattened into the gallery walls. Marble rocks assume the form of bubbles and float up from the floor. In Synthetics and Organics, human bones are impossibly and awkwardly curved to assume the proportions of pre-historic animals. Even wet, heavy clay is forced into long flat slabs, rolled with lengths of tough, thick, ribbed plastic industrial drainage pipe from horizontal subterranean construction projects, pleated and treated like a flat, sheeted industrial material. The moment when a mass of organic underground clay encounters human infrastructure is solidified and brought above ground.

These processes involve radical and not entirely frictionless changes in state—between solid and liquid, animate and inanimate, h o r i z o n t a l and vertical, gravitational and anti-gravitational. These movements open up an in-between place, a Half-life, achieved by a kind of material binary, a movement between and across various states of matter.

The works are made up of flat layers of materials and objects that are placed h o r i z o n t a l l y to each other, but rarely touch. They propose a type of embodiment that is dis-embodied as much as embodied, object as much as subject. If they were bodies, these objects would be bodies as shells, empty and hollow. Their layered surfaces are manufactured by human and non-human bodies and minds, with heavy clay, cold metal, loose fabric, and solid stone. As objects/subjects they half-inhabit strangely and subtly altered in-between physical states. They are h o r i z o n t a l , flat, shell-like, s t r e t c h e d , pleated, curved, stuttering, expanding, and contracting. These weird qualities both awkwardly and elegantly suggest mutations and adaptations, particular and alternative other ways of being. Channer describes the process of horizontal authorship of the works as an authoring “by many different beings, only one of which is me.”

Living amidst these changes in state, and being both able and unable to adapt to them, are fundamental to what it means to be human in the twenty-first century, as such extreme fluxes in state—in scale, time, materials, geology, economics, biology, politics, and society—become more and more characteristic of our age. Half-life materially articulates what this experience might feel like.

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Installation view: Alice Channer, Half-life, 2015

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/614a3358ae7d61f6d40299e345c889c0-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Installation view: Alice Channer, Half-life, 2015

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/62db03b0dc960d0524399afcf2dbf28d-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Installation view: Alice Channer, Half-life, 2015

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/f1e99651e9c217a2a3c96fa0c25f0fe5-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Synthetics,” 2015. Fired and Glazed Ceramic; Rolled, Mirror Polished Stainless Steel; Pleather Print on Stainless Steel; Accordion Pleated Hi-tech Lamé; Cast Jesmonite; 13.8 x 185.5 x 39.75 inches

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Alice Channer “Synthetics” (detail) 2015. Fired and Glazed Ceramic; Rolled, Mirror Polished Stainless Steel; Pleather Print on Stainless Steel; Accordion Pleated Hi-tech Lamé; Cast Jesmonite; 13.8 x 185.5 x 39.75 inches

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/7d38b586700f82513813f3b0309915cf-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Organics,” 2015. Fired and Glazed Ceramic; Cast and Chromed Bronze; Rolled, Mirror Polished Stainless Steel; Accordion Pleated Hi-Tech Lamé; 11.8 x 146.5 x 53.5 inches

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/b0279a28478100a208149a28ba1023f4-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Organics” (detail) 2015. Fired and Glazed Ceramic; Cast and Chromed Bronze; Rolled, Mirror Polished Stainless Steel; Accordion Pleated Hi-Tech Lamé; 11.8 x 146.5 x 53.5 inches

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Alice Channer “Cooling Pools (North),” 2015. Mirror Polished and Laser Cut Stainless Steel; Cast and Mirror Polished Aluminium; Accordion Pleated Snake Skin Heat-embossed Stretch Polyester; Wet-look Snake Print Stretch Leggings; Pelletized HDPE; 62.6 x 30.3 x 64.6 inches

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/810e7ee759a9358d048a2bd0ce7375d5-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Cooling Pools (North)” (detail), 2015. Mirror Polished and Laser Cut Stainless Steel; Cast and Mirror Polished Aluminium; Accordion Pleated Snake Skin Heat-embossed Stretch Polyester; Wet-look Snake Print Stretch Leggings; Pelletized HDPE; 62.6 x 30.3 x 64.6 inches

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/5726fdd2d96db62f4fa7887c41f0b10f-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Hi-Tide (compressed),” 2015. Framed Digital Print on Heavy Crepe De Chine; Machined, Carved and Hand Polished Marble In Two Parts: Framed Dimensions: 67.5 x 61.5 inches; Marble Dimensions: 8 x 8 x 8 inches

http://www.lisa-cooley.com/directus/media/thumbnails/23221eef287f369eef1e45be4725e47b-jpg-1500-1500-false.jpg
Alice Channer “Hi-Tide (compressed)” (detail) 2015. Framed Digital Print on Heavy Crepe De Chine; Machined, Carved and Hand Polished Marble In Two Parts: Framed Dimensions: 67.5 x 61.5 inches; Marble Dimensions: 8 x 8 x 8 inches