The Armory Show 2016: Matthew Brandt, Ellen Carey, Nathaniel Mary Quinn, Mariah Robertson

Matthew Brandt’s Wai’anae series further investigates the alchemy of the photographic process, as first explored in his Lakes and Reservoirs works. Once again taking the natural world as his subject, the artist's chromogenic prints of the Hawaiian jungle are rolled in dirt, leaves, burlap and lace, and then buried on a farm in Oahu. Over time the layers of emulsions in the prints mix with the elements, and as the surfaces erode, impressions of the patterned fabrics and materials emerge, in visceral traces of the process.


Matthew Brandt (b. 1982, Los Angeles) received his BFA from Cooper Union in 2004 and MFA from UCLA in 2008. Brandt has been the subject of recent institutional solo shows at the Columbus Museum of Art; Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art and SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah. Recent group exhibitions include The Magic Medium at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Light, Paper, Process: Reinventing Photography at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Second Chances at the Aspen Art Museum; What is a Photograph? at the International Center of Photography, New York;  and Land Marks at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. His work can be found in the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Armand Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and Brooklyn Museum of Art, among others. In 2015, Brandt was shortlisted for the prestigious Prix Pictet award and had his work showcased in an exhibition at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Upcoming events include a video work debuting at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in April and participation in a thematic exhibition at the George Eastman Museum, New York. Matthew Brandt lives and works in Los Angeles.


Ellen Carey's pioneering work with the large-format Polaroid 20 x 24 camera spans several decades and anticipated major themes in contemporary photography. Carey began working with the camera in New York in 1983, starting with her Portrait series (1984 - 1988). Her experimentation with abstraction in these images was a precursor to her later, purely abstract Pulls (1996 - 2007). The Portraits employ multiple exposures to feature likenesses overlaid with wild psychedelic patterns and figures from mathematic-fractals, while the Pulls are completely abstract works, playing with the color and mechanics of the camera that engage with the materiality of the medium in relation to painting and sculpture.


Ellen Carey (b. 1952, New York) received her BFA from Kansas City Art Institute and MFA from The State University of New York at Buffalo. Her work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions at such institutions as the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT and International Center of Photography, New York, among others. A selection of Carey’s Self-Portraits is currently on view in the thematic exhibition, The Unbearable Lightness – The 1980s: Photography, Film at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Recent group shows includeThe Edge of Vision: The Rise of Abstraction in Photography at the Aperture Foundation, New York; Part Picture at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto; and The Persistence of Geometry at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Carey’s work can be found in the permanent collections of The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Art Institute of Chicago; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington D.C.; and The Cleveland Museum of Art, among others. Ellen Carey lives and works in Hartford, Connecticut, where she also teaches at the Hartford Art School, University of Hartford.


Nathaniel Mary Quinn's haunting abstract-figurative works on paper are meditations on the artist’s life. Based on intimate visions that are culled from his past experiences and unresolved memories and associations, these works deal with the complex construction of identity. Though they initially appear to be collages, each portrait is in fact produced through meticulous hand-rendering by Quinn. Working in a combination of gouache, oil stick and charcoal, each hybrid figure combines the artist’s classical training with his exhaustive range of source materials that include autobiographical elements as well as contemporary imagery.


Nathaniel Mary Quinn (b. 1977, Chicago) received his BFA from Wabash College and MFA from New York University. Solo exhibitions include Back and Forth at Rhona Hoffman Gallery, Chicago; Past/Present at Pace Gallery, London; Hybrids: The Windows Exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, New York, and The Magic Stick at Rush Arts Gallery, New York. Group exhibitions include Unrealism, organized by Jeffrey Deitch and Larry Gagosian, Miami; AIM 23 at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, NY; American Beauty at Susan-Inglett Gallery, New York; and group presentations at Frieze London and Art Basel Miami Beach. Quinn has been profiled in a number of publications, including The Independent (London), Modern Painters and Huffington Post. His work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Art Institute of Chicago; Sheldon Museum of Art, Lincoln, NE, among others. The artist will have his first solo exhibition at M+B in May 2016. Nathaniel Mary Quinn lives and works in Brooklyn.


Mariah Robertson’s signature process uses the elemental components of photography: light, photo chemicals and a light-sensitive surface to create sweeping abstract compositions. Each hand-processed piece is the result of applying chemicals in varying dilutions and temperatures directly to the photo paper. Made without a camera, the expressionistic forms explore a darkroom practice where the materials and physical process of making the work, and the balance between chance and intention, are integral to the image.


Mariah Robertson (b. 1975, Indianapolis) received her BA from University of California, Berkeley and her MFA from Yale University. She has exhibited widely including recent solo institutional shows at the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, UK, and Grand Arts, Kansas City, along with a two-person show at Cleveland Museum of Art’s Transformer Station. Recent group exhibitions include Part Picture, Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto; A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Outside the Lines: Rites of Spring at the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Process and Abstraction at the Cleveland Museum of Art’s Transformer Station, Picture/Thing, Ezra and Cecile Zilkha Gallery at Wesleyan University Center for the Arts, CT; What is a Photograph? at the International Center of Photography, New York; and Modern Alchemy: Experiments in Photography at the Heckscher Museum of Art, New York. Her work is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, among others. Mariah Robertson lives and works in Brooklyn.


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