13FOREST Gallery is pleased to present Transition of Power: 2017, an exhibition dedicated to artistic voices in response to the current state of American politics. With presidential elections taking place every four years, a peaceful transition of power has become the hallmark of American democracy. However, as a new president ascends to the highest office in the land, millions of Americans remain shocked by the results of the November 2016 election, and fearful of changes to come.
In an increasingly polarized nation, we often look to artists to make sense of the world around us. Transition of Power: 2017 features John Campbell, eBay, Asia Kepka, Mark Luiggi, Ted Ollier, Dimel Rivas, Sarah Rushford and Jason Wallace. Working in a range of media, from photography to sculpture, printmaking to painting, each of these Boston-area artists offers unique commentary on the nature of our (dis)union.
Artists have long held an important role in activism, but viewers, too, play a key part in political dissent. As the playwright Harold Pinter reminds us in his 2005 Nobel lecture, "Art, Truth and Politics," the search for the truth must be an ongoing partnership between artist and citizen. Pinter says, "sometimes a writer has to smash the mirror—for it is on the other side of that mirror that the truth stares at us. I believe that despite the enormous odds which exist, unflinching, unswerving, fierce intellectual determination, as citizens, to define the real truth of our lives and our societies is a crucial obligation which devolves upon us all. It is in fact mandatory." It is our hope that Transition of Power: 2017 generates meaningful discussion and productive action amongst artists, citizens and our governing bodies.
In keeping with our commitment to social justice and local communities, a portion of the proceeds from this exhibition will be donated to the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts (ACLU).
Jan. 21 - March 11, 2017
Sat 1/21, 4-6 pm: Opening Reception
Sat 2/4, 4-6 pm: Art, Truth and Politics - A conversation with the artists
Sat 2/11, 4-6 pm: Romancing the Square - Cocktail Hour at 13FOREST
Sat 2/25, 4-6 pm: Speaking Freely - An evening with the ACLU
About the artists
John Campbell grew up in Muncie, Indiana, and moved to the East Coast to earn his BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. His work draws inspiration from Mughal and Indian miniature painting as well as religious art from around the world. Campbell creates meticulously detailed worlds in a miniaturist style, incorporating characters from mythology into scenes where they take on new meaning. He lives in Somerville, Massachusetts.
eBay is multidisciplinary, working with all kinds of shapes, styles and colors of consumer culture to help you set the mood in any room or environment, creating eye-catching conversation pieces.
Asia Kepka is a photographer based in Arlington, Massachusetts. Her background in art stems from set design—which she studied in her native Poland—and modeling, before turning to cameras and photography. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Wired, TIME, Fortune and the New York Times.
Mark Luiggi is a painter and illustrator based in Somerville, Massachusetts. In addition to years as a graphic designer and commercial illustrator, Luiggi specializes in watercolor paintings that offer humorous interpretations of the seemingly commonplace.
Ted Ollier is a printmaker and conceptual artist working in Medford, Massachusetts. He holds degrees from the University of Texas, Texas State University and Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Ollier's concerns are with data and its interaction with the consensus reality, and how that reality is affected and changed by that data.
Dimel Rivas is a 3D illustrator based in Boston. She graduated from Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where she explored unconventional ways of storytelling and creating space. Rivas describes her artistic practice as one based in narrative—the slow and careful unraveling of an individual's own story.
Sarah Rushford is an interdisciplinary artist who works primarily in video and text art. She draws inspiration from the metaphysical charge of images and objects related to written language, image-making and ritual. Rushford holds a BFA from Hartford Art School and an MA in media studies from the New School. She works from her studio in East Boston.
Jason Wallace is a Boston-based artist originally from the South Side of Chicago. He holds an MFA in visual and performing arts from Tufts University in partnership with the School of the Museum of Fine Arts. Wallace's art investigates interpersonal relationships, personal relationships to material objects, and the text and subtext of societal norms. His Black on Black series examines precepts from founding documents in American history.