MAY 2018 AT LITTLE BERLIN
In the Main Gallery:
A group exhibition
MAY 12 - 26
Opening Reception: May 12th 6-9pm with performance by Katie Rauth at 7pm
Closing Reception: May 26th 6-9
Gallery Hours: Sundays 1 - 4pm + By Appointment: Berlin.Little@gmail.com
All of us are affected by Motherhood. Some of us are Mothers, some yearn to be, some never will. Some Mothers are women, some are not. Some of us are just like our Mothers, some of us wish we were not. Some call their biological parent “Mother”, others choose their Mother. The concept of Motherhood touches all of humanity in some way and yet its experience is intensely personal. Motherhood is neither Hallmark Card nor Radical Manifesto; it exists, like a feeling between words and declarations.
Mother’s Day is an exploration of these feelings, and more. Zoë Cohen uses the effluvia of motherhood as a “reflection on my transition into, through, and beyond the early stages of motherhood” and the daily labor that demands, while Lisa Sylvester and Erin Elizabeth document new motherhood with mandalas of pills and sprinkles or meticulous pencil drawings. Naomieh Jovin explores her feelings around the loss of her mother through photography, making “connections to her mother’s personal history alongside hers” and exploring her own identity as a Haitian-American. The drag community forms its own familial bonds with drag mothers, daughters and houses: Katie Rauth’s performative work appropriates stereotypes of femininity in drag queen culture, establishing “power and strength in her own femininity through constructed identity while questioning “the surprisingly narrow mindset of gender inclusivity in mainstream drag.” Xia Zhang and Lavett Ballard uncover identity through an exploration of heritage: Xia as a Chinese-born woman who has spent most of her life “in white-dominated communities from coal country to wine country” and Lavett as an African American woman exploring how gender and race alienate or imprison.
Curated by Little Berlin members: Em Jensen & Kayte Terry
May 12–May 20th
(Re)mnants: a solo exhibition by Monique Muse Dodd
Opening reception: May 12th, 6-9pm
The Annex at Little Berlin
May 26th, 2018 6-9pm
Mothers’ Day Closing Reception/
Synth BBQ- food and synth performance by Jerry Kaba/
HOMECOMING: a solo exhibition by Luan Joy Sherman — Opening in the Annex May 26th
About the Artists:
Lavett Ballard is an Artist, Art historian, Curator, and Author. She holds a dual Bachelor’s in Studio Art and Art History with a minor in Museum Studies from Rutgers University. And is a recent graduate with her MFA in Studio Art from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
Her work has been exhibited in museums, galleries, public and private institutions nationwide. She’s a regional finalist for both New York & Philadelphia for the Bombay Artisan Emerging Artist competition. Ballard has had the honor of having her art included in literary, film, theater productions.
Ballard looks at her art as a diverse visual narrative of people of African descent within a historical folk context. Her newest body of work, uses formal elements of paint, charcoal, oil pastel, and collage, deconstructed, and layered on reclaimed large and small aged wood fences. The use of fences is a symbolic reference to how fences keep people in and out, just as racial and gender identities can do the same socially.
Zoë Cohen is a visual artist who works conceptually in a wide range of materials and modalities, creating works on paper, sculptures, installations, audio works, and public participatory projects. She has BA in Fine Arts from Haverford College and an MFA from Brooklyn College. Residencies include The Vermont Studio Center, Philadelphia's 40th Street AIR program, and the Artist-in-Residence program at the Philadelphia Cathedral. Her work has been exhibited in numerous group and solo exhibitions in Philadelphia, New York, and Berlin, and is in the permanent collections of The Philadelphia Museum of Jewish Art, The Museum of Art and Peace, and The Philadelphia Cathedral. Zoë is an art educator and labor activist, and is an Adjunct Professor at Tyler School of Art at Temple University, The University of the Arts, and at Moore College of Art. In 2017 her work was presented at the National Museum of American Jewish History, The Arlington Art Center, and The Goggleworks Center for the Arts. Zoe lives in Philadelphia PA with her partner and two children.
Erin Elizabeth received her B.F.A. from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her M.F.A. from Illinois State University. Elizabeth’s works have been featured in national and international solo and group exhibitions. Notable exhibitions include Dittmar Memorial Gallery at Northwestern University, Happy Gallery in Chicago, and UCF Art Gallery at the University of Central Florida. Elizabeth has received press in The Chicago Tribune and The Indianapolis Business Journal. She has work in the permanent collections of Harold Washington Community College and the Limerick School of Art and Design in Limerick, Ireland. Elizabeth lives and works in Chicago with her husband and two sons.
Naomieh Jovin is a visual artist who primarily works with photography. She received her BFA in Photography & Digital Arts from Moore College of Art & Design (‘17). Recently her work has been influenced by the absence of her late mother as well as her experience growing up Haitian in America. In her work she utilizes found images of her mother and incorporates the nude female body to try and recreate similar moments. Through this process she makes connections to her mother’s personal history alongside hers, touching upon topics of sexual violence and racial bias. Naomieh Jovin currently lives and works in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Katie Rauth is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Philadelphia, PA. Her current work centers around the disempowerment and invisibility of a high femme identity within the queer community. Embracing the appropriative stereotypes of femininity in drag queen culture as a place of comfort rather than exploitation, Rauth’s goal is to establish power and strength in her own femininity through constructed identity and question the surprisingly narrow mindset of gender inclusivity in mainstream drag.
Lisa Sylvester holds a BA from Dartmouth College and received her MFA from Boston University. Her paintings and works on paper employ text, pattern, and the grid, and have been shown nationally in exhibitions at Morgan Lehman Gallery (NYC), Geoffrey Young Gallery (MA), 33 Orchard (NYC), The National Arts Club (NYC), LGTripp Gallery (PA), Cerulean Arts (PA), and Benjamin Mangel Gallery (PA). A past Leeway Foundation grant recipient, Sylvester lives and works in Philadelphia, and teaches at Moore College of Art and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
Xia Zhang is a multi-disciplinary artist born in southern China, grew up in suburban Maryland, and came into adulthood in Appalachia. She works with process as a medium to convey intersectional concepts of craft, colonialism, and femininity. Historical research heavily influences the materiality and narrative behind her work, as well as thoughts on cultural inheritance. Xia has been an avid outsider wallflower her whole life, and thus spends most of her time watching. Much of her work has evolved based on her observations from living in white-dominated communities from coal country to wine country. She earned her MFA in 2015 and has completed residencies with Sonoma Ceramics (Sonoma, CA) in 2015, and awarded the Windgate Craft Artists Fellowship to participate at the Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT) in 2016. Since 2012, Xia has exhibited nationally and in China. She was the Alice C. Cole Visiting Artist at Wellesley College (Wellesley, MA) 2016- 2017, and is currently a 2017-2018 resident artist at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts (Gatlinburg, TN), and has forthcoming plans to attend The Growlery (San Francisco, CA) as an artist in residence summer 2018.
In the Annex:
Luan Joy Sherman
MAY 26- June 10
May 26th 6-9pm
Little Berlin is pleased to present the first solo exhibition by Brooklyn-based artist Luan Joy Sherman. Titled HOMECOMING, the upcoming Annex show presents works inspired by an 11 month period, when the artist managed memory loss and the effects of post-operative cognitive dysfunction, resulting from two consecutive surgeries in 2016. During this time, Luan revisited sites from his childhood, retracing his steps to understand where he came from, how he came to be, and who he is relative to who he was. The sculptures, objects, and videos on view in HOMECOMING examine origin and ‘home’, masculinity, transition, queer & trans bodies, and the impact of time, location, and identity on memory as well as reality.
What does it mean to come from a place? To be ‘of’ that thing?
The artwork and objects in HOMECOMING move across media and dimension, consisting of tables, blankets, pillows, and furnishings: household objects we depend on for stability and comfort. Reconfigured and re-contextualized, these objects are available for examination and engagement. Sherman’s personal excavation process will be on display in the form of writings, drawings, printed images, rope, ocean debris, parking tickets, stickers, and trash, compiled during a residency at SPACE Gallery, located in his birthplace of Portland, Maine. His video works also reference this place of origin and create a bridge for the past to engage the present.
Luan Joy Sherman (b. 1993), is a queer, trans male artist living in Brooklyn, NY. He works with embroidery, photography, sculpture, performance, video, and sound, to explore gender, queer theory, and body politics. He has attended residencies at The Chautauqua School of Art (2014), Black Mountain School (2016), School of the Alternative (2017), ACRE (2017), and was most recently the Artist In Residence at SPACE Gallery (2018). He is an active member of the School of the Alternative in Black Mountain, NC and has served as faculty for the past two years. He graduated from The Savannah College of Art and Design in 2015 with a B.F.A. in Painting and Art History and will begin his Masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in August 2018.