UNCOVERING A RESISTANCE
May 3-31, 2019
Kyle Campbell | Oni Dakini | Gini Holmes | Ryan Ramos
Reception: Friday, May 3, 5-7 pm
The Discovery Show Series is a juried exhibition featuring bodies of work by artists that have had limited local exposure. Juried by Jacob Meders.
Uncovering a Resistance looks at art as resistance or as artists having critical conversations with their community. Some of these concepts can be an internal perspective or outwardly facing. Art has the power to bring abstract and not so abstract thoughts to the table for reasoning. Can objects or works of art drive a perceptual shift within our communities? How can we have conversations with civility, without words, and lean on the skills of making? These works of art were chosen because they have a voice with no sound and they ask to be heard and learned from.
This exhibition is generously sponsored by Ann & Tony Slocum
The fire inside
[excerpt] "Over at the Chico Art Center, the recently opened Uncovering a Resistance exhibit features works by Kyle Campbell, Oni Dakini, Gini Holmes and Ryan Ramos, four local artists with “limited exposure” united under one theme. As juror Jacob Meders put it in his show statement, it’s “art as resistance or as artists having critical conversations with their community.” Through Dakini’s expressionist palette of mixed-media on canvas, a woman stares out from “Dakini Dances,” defiant and tough, with a poignant wariness and surrounded by flora, snakes, skulls and other female profiles. In the center, a collaged scrap with an explanation of the symbolic nature of the sacred dakini female spirit is juxtaposed with a plain scrap with a penciled rifle, offering a contradiction of color and imagery.
In “Briefcase Full of Guts,” Campbell has placed a dozen white lead-crystal hand grenades in a protective black case, deeming them a precious commodity despite their deathly impact. And in “Fortifying the American Dream (Gates),” he has four powder-coated cast-iron picket fences suspended by ceiling wires, raising this symbol of life’s success beyond the grasp of many.
Ramos’ finely drawn colored pencil on paper “Amor” offers a tongue-in-cheek rendering of a Mexican man whose come-hither look beckons from underneath a blue sombrero.
Lastly, Holmes voices her take on women’s issues and politics in “Three Jobs.” For the piece, she has embroidered over a heat-transferred image on handmade paper and then attached it to a dinner plate for a multi textured effect. The image is of a woman working in a field from an 1888 etching, “The Portionless Girl,” and it’s encircled with a quote from a comment former President George W. Bush once made to a divorced Nebraska mother of three: “You work three jobs? … [t]hat is fantastic that you’re doing that.”
Sarcastic? Oh, yes. And an effective example of pointed resistance."
I would guesstimate my style is impressionistic, mixed with abstraction and symbolism. I went through a phase of realism, but after getting involved with photography, I decided that if I wanted a picture- that’s all I’d need- not a painting. I went through a stage of making art as ugly as possible- using colors that would be used to cover graffiti…
I’ve added and subtracted, sewn and ripped apart/bonded together different canvases- symbols- words- formulas- sayings- places and experiences. I love symbols- I love soul and all the soul that African American, Asian and Indian cultures share. They have similar drum beats. I see ghosts and dream of them all the time.
Most of my art is of women and kids and mostly women of color- brown, red, black, mixed- because these are people who can relate to me. All the “socially unacceptable” are the ones I have a deeper bond with. I am Hawaiian-Comanche and my daughter is also Mexican and German, so we’re everyone. She’s a sweet person and very different than me. My biggest want and wish is that all the people of the same social system would finally ban together and be real.
I currently live in Chico. I came from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Van Nuys, Long Beach, Pacoima, Sepulveda, Hollywood, North Hollywood, Flagstaff, Portland, Glendale, Arleta, Scottsdale, Scout, Wichita, Hancock, Joplin, St. Charles, St. Paul, St. Johns, Gresham, Phoenix, Mesa and Tempe. I’ve faced Bel Air, swam in their pools. I’ve had my back to headless alley and been shot at, shot near, pretty much any abuse you can name. I’m a foster kid. My real folks are evil and twisted catholic Sicilians. I am a real born street kid. I was wondering streets in my toddler years.
I am starting my second year as a Wildland firefighter. The work that I am showing is a few years old, but was given new meaning by recent events locally and by events in my life as well. I live in Chico, but am grateful I was in a position at the time of the fire in Paradise to be able to do something about it.
I created Fortifying the American Dream about a year after finishing college during an internship at the Kohler factory in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. At that time, I felt that working in an iron plant would crystallize the feeling I had towards hard work. It was the first time I spent a long time away from home; and that’s what I spent time thinking about. Home. Family. What is home? What is the American dream? Work really wasn’t that hard when I had something I felt that I was working towards. What I was working towards remains unclear. But having goals, however unclear makes hard days better.
Often I think about place, security and ambition. I used the grenade image as a symbol of power. Making them made me feel powerful. I wanted to become a more efficient grenade maker. When I see the case of glass explosives now, I can think about how efficient I was at making them, but also how they were actually a symbol of cowardice. A briefcase full of guts is a cool mantra for someone who hates their job, and I use that to remind myself that I am in control. I’m happy with where I’m at.
RYAN RAMOS and GINI HOLMES statements are included in the artwork captions.