Apr 29–Jun 10, 2023
Kaveri Raina and Coral Saucedo Lomelí: What Do You Remember About the Earth
Lighthouse Works is thrilled to announce Kaveri Raina and Coral Saucedo Lomelí: What Do You Remember About the Earth, our first exhibition of the 2023 season and the first in a series of exhibitions that invite Lighthouse Works alumni to conceive of a conversation between their respective practices.
In What Do You Remember About the Earth, Raina (28) and Saucedo Lomelí (38) exhibit a selection of recent drawings, paintings and sculptures. These works invite a conversation about materials, forms, shapes, and sources that ultimately leads to a discussion of the relationship between landscape and the body. By building upon simple materials, the artists push us to question how our identities and our bodies find consonance with the body of the Earth in the Anthropocene. What was Earth? Did we make it? Did it make us? Is it matter or material, or both?
Encountering Raina and Saucedo Lomelí’s works in the gallery, one is initially struck by their shared affinities for color palettes and processes. Both artists have an affinity for “natural” or Earth tones. These are reflected in Saucedo Lomelí‘s clay and concrete forms, and in Raina’s arduously rendered graphite paintings and drawings. Both bodies of work make allusions, through their process, to art historical terms of abstraction, poetics, metaphysics, minimalism, and arte povera. Both artists use terms like “matter” and “vessel” to describe their work. Finally, the works themselves exhibit a vibrant materiality that is fleeting and transitory. Here, the Earth – as matter – can be transformed through complex rituals as a means to reorient our vision toward deeper sensibilities and more expansive states of being. What will we remember about the Earth, if not its textures, materials, colors, tones?
Known for her paintings on raw burlap and drawings where forms emerge from a time-consuming process of manual drafting, Kaveri Raina’s deft use of materials such as acrylic, oil stick, pastel, charcoal, and graphite resolve in a delicate tension between the body, passages between spiritual and natural states, and two-dimensional space. The unknown/known forms that emerge from Raina’s richly processed tableaux prompt us to ask what is the body and what is landscape, and how do we as humans, over the course of our lives and deaths, transition between the two forms. These drawings emerge from a kind of internal rage, a rage that is built up until it becomes a form of combustive energy. In her own telling, Raina thinks constantly about the idea of ‘sweat’ and the build up of laborious actions in her work.
For this exhibition, Raina has paired a series of seven framed drawings on paper in graphite, charcoal, and oil pastel, alongside four drawn and painted panels from her “No Lacks” series which delve into the margins between the self and shadow. Raina’s “image inventions” (as she calls them) create moments of dissonance and disunity, while operating within a harmonic totality where each piece informs and builds a balanced whole, yet is always teetering, hovering, and in flux.
Coral Saucedo Lomelí’s work takes up the vernacular language of everyday materials and objects found in the urban landscape and in our domestic spaces. The sculptures shown in this exhibition—crafted of metal, clay, cement, and wood—capture and reframe simple gestures that she encounters in the industrial zone around her studio in Gowanus, Brooklyn, combined with materials found in the home. Saucedo Lomelí’s work elevates these informal products of the built environment, and counters them with a supple reference to the body, and in particular, women’s bodies. Her practice embraces the poetics of the street, and reflects the precarious relationship between infrastructure and ornament, permeability and impermeability, hole and whole, individualized self and society. There’s a sensitivity in this approach, and an awareness that changing a single element will upset the delicate balance that maintains the totality. As within a poem, meaning in Saucedo Lomelí's sculptures can be made or unmade by a minor intervention, puncture, or displacement. Through their forms and juxtapositions, the works create compositions that touch on a collective unconscious of navigating the world.
Presented as part of twofold, the exhibition is intended as a starting point for a conversation between the artists that spotlights both unity and disorder between working practices, aspirations, and processes that are sometimes complementary, but not always. Opening up space for process and tension within their approaches, Saucedo Lomelí’s and Raina’s modes of making force us to reconsider rote definitions of genres, modes, and materials. We come away with the sense that the work can hold more than the work itself.
A price-list is available upon request, with all sales benefitting the artists and Lighthouse Works. Lighthouse Works thanks Chapter (NY) and Patron (Chicago) for their support of this exhibition.
twofold is a series of conversations in and around the Annex gallery between Lighthouse Works alumni. The conceit is simple: one fellow is invited to select the work of another fellow with whom they want to be in conversation. The artists meet for studio visits and discuss the resonances and dissonances in their practices and decide together what might be presented in the space. The series intends to initiate a starting point and share beginnings rather than conclusions. Each exhibition is intended as a process rather than a fully-finished form. Supplementing the exhibition-as-conversation, the series also features interviews with exhibiting artists as part of Lighthouse Works’ podcast series More Friends. The twofold series is organized by Lighthouse Works program director, Dylan Gauthier.
Kaveri Raina (28) (b. 1990; Delhi, India) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received her BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2011, her MFA in Painting and Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016. She attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2017 and was a Lighthouse Works Fellow in 2018. Raina has received various awards and fellowships including the James Nelson Raymond fellowship and the Fred and Joanna Lazarus Scholarship, and she was recently nominated for the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors grant. Raina’s work has been exhibited in the US, India and Europe.
Coral Saucedo Lomelí (38), born in Mexico City, recontextualizes overlooked objects and processes into poetic moments. Through her sculptures, she explores material relationships, labor, and collapsing systems, drawing inspiration from domestic objects, the urban landscape, poetry, and craft. Saucedo Lomelí completed her undergraduate studies at ArtCenter College of Design and an MFA at Yale University. She has done residencies at Yaddo (New York), RUINA (Oaxaca), The Lighthouse Works (New York), SOMA (Mexico City) amongst others and currently resides and works in Brooklyn.