SIOBHÁN HAPASKA: Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York

January 11 - February 12, 2007
Installation Views
Press release

Tanya Bonakdar Gallery is pleased to present Siobhán Hapaska’s third solo exhibition in New York. The six new sculptures that comprise this body of work explore themes of conflict and resolution, both domestic and political, juxtaposing natural and synthetic materials to create works that are unique and extremely resonant. Though each sculpture incorporates disparate styles and themes, they are united by a thoughtful and coherent analysis of human interaction, addressing issues of communication, interiority, subjugation versus domination, loneliness and hurt, and presenting each serious topic with an element of humor, and an underlying hopefulness.


In the entryway, an ape on a pedestal greets the viewer. Titled “speaker”, its face morphs and swirls into a protrusion that resembles a flower. Like a three dimensional speech bubble from a cartoon, the flowering face of the ape represents language, with the stark black and white areas aggressively depicting authoritarian or fascist speech, and the softer more nuanced blues and oranges showing positive communication; significantly the two are intertwined, coming from the same mouth. A coil of woven leather extends from points on the ceiling around the ape, and down into the stairwell, leading the visitor back into the main gallery, and towards its origin, “looped linear thinking pac thing”; a low lying sleigh-like construction, covered in pony skin, which supports an open head, from which the brown woven leather emerges. This coil of leather, made by the repetitive activity of “finger knitting”, starts at the top of the sculpture’s “head” and is representative of the thought process, which can often seem endlessly cyclical, revisiting the same issues, like the repeating stitches of the cord. This repetition is critical however, just as many loops are necessary in order for the cord to grow, they are also necessary for the thought process to develop and progress.