Knew Normal presented a selection of recent works from established and emerging contemporary artists who use paintings, drawings, photography, sculpture and wearable art to bear witness to the moments when environments, including the body, become more difficult or awkward to inhabit for reasons generally attributed to climate change. The artists in Knew Normal depict universally familiar themes of loss and uncertainty, tempered with unmistakable empathy and, at times, hope and humor. Each artwork in the exhibition tells a story about how our physical and psychological environments are shaped by current climates, whether social, political or environmental. Several of the artists also looked to the future, as characters of the existing universe are drastically altered or disappear altogether. Knew Normal recognized the age old tradition (or compulsion) of art making as a strategy for understanding complex circumstances and emotions. As we come to terms with our “new normal,” and as we brace for the near and distant future, what will we learn from what once was and how might we affect what will be? The exhibition was guest curated by Nancy Zastudil.
Gala Bent (Seattle, WA), Wendy Mason (Los Angeles, CA), Magda Biernat (Brooklyn, NY), Nina Montenegro (Portland, OR), Nick Brown (Los Angeles, CA), Ryan Pierce (Portland, OR), Mel Chin (Houston, TX), Liliana Porter (New York, NY), Adriane Colburn (San Francisco, CA), Dario Robleto (Houston, TX), Naomi Kizhner (Israel), Miriam Simun (Brooklyn, NY), Lee Lee (Taos, NM/Denver, CO) and Cedra Wood (Albuquerque, NM)
Wesley Plukka, “A Growing Doodle” Albuquerque Journal
Emily Beenen, “Habitat: Exploring Climate Change through the Arts” Local Flavor Magazine
Renee Chavez, “The Art of Saving a Planet” Alibi
Kathaleen Roberts, “Climate Winesses” Albuquerque Journal
Matthew Irwin, “Artist Mel Chin Proposes a Solar Currency for the Sahah” Hyperallergic