A FLARE TOSSED INTO THE ROOM
May 20 - July 7, 2016
Opening Reception: Friday, May 20, 8-11 PM
Gallery Protocol is pleased to present A Flare Tossed into the Room, an exhibition by artist John Orth. The exhibition features a new series of mixed media and sculptural works: mirrored tables, work lights, collections of fruit, cast and captured natural forms, tangles of citrus and electrical chords are all assembled into a complex, elegiac visual poetry. As the evocative title suggests, these works do not reveal themselves entirely to the viewer’s understanding but are experienced, rather, as moments of sharply vignetted, attenuated insight - bursts of light - into an otherwise obscured set of private symbols, meanings, and stories.
In A Flare Tossed into the Room, Orth employs many of the collection strategies of an entomologist. Shop lights snake into dark spaces. Orth is not seeking biological information, as does a scientist, but the capture of ideas. Tangled beacons attempt to fix slippery, darting moments in time. Unwieldy objects embedded in plaster and clay try to represent a snapping into focus like a lightning strike fusing sand into glass. These twists of light scale in and out as sputtering constellations and bubbling molecular structures. They are self-generating energy sources, fountainheads fueling the rest of the installation. Elsewhere, a panoply of objects on gold-mirrored tabletops are sorted, catalogued, and displayed. Objects replicate and transform across this surface, creating a simulacrum of the natural world.
John Orth is an artist and musician who is currently pursuing an MFA in sculpture at Virginia Commonwealth University. He is a founding member of the band Holopaw who released two recordings on Sub Pop Records. He is also a contributing member of Isaac Brock’s (of Modest Mouse) project, Ugly Casanova. He was cofounder of F.L.A. Gallery in Gainesville, Florida in 2012. His artistic pursuits have included collaborations with experimental filmmakers Roger Beebe, Alan Calpe, and Adam Baran. Over the years he has exhibited extensively with Cinders Gallery in New York.
(Below are photos from the Opening Reception)