May 12th- July 30th 2022
We are pleased to present BURYING PAINTING, a new installation of work by New York-based artist James Perkins. Created on the beach of Fire Island, Perkins’ BURYING PAINTING series employs a unique land art process that he developed in 2016. The time-based land art installations that Perkins calls “post-totem” structures blur the lines between sculpture and painting, monumental land art and temporary works, human intervention and nature.
Taking up to two years to complete a single work, Perkins’ installations, deeply rooted in performance, harness the forces of nature to explore the beauty in weathering the vicissitudes of life. Silk is stretched over wooden frames to make each structure. The structure is then semi-buried, placed, or stacked outdoors in various locations for a period of time. Left to fade in the sun, endure the rain and wind, or interact with the ocean, snow, sand and animals, each work becomes its own environmental record. Perkins manipulates this process through his own interventions such as specifying burial sites and rotating the structures. In this process, the sculpture and the painting happen at once, abstracting form. Following the gestational period, the silk is removed from the sculpture and then re-stretched as a painting. The forces of nature are recorded on the facade of the paintings; there’s visible evidence of the surface being attacked by water while pollen, leaves, sand or even roots still cling to the surface. Classically, totems are defined as a natural object or animal that is believed to have spiritual significance. Perkins’ totems abstract the visual form while blending the past, present, and future. He believes that we all navigate totems and their historical and contemporary values to paint an identity either closer to or further away from a neutral existence. The exhibition also includes a sound sculpture and video work, A Meeting With The Sky (2016), demonstrating a post totem structure in situ on the beach. “I’m interested in the beauty that affects us all,” says Perkins. “Sitting at the edge of the Show, I am overwhelmed with Gratitude and hope. I’m reminded of the best sculpture ever- the Earth- the object that we all share. I hope we can learn to share better.”