In Case You Missed It: Greg Lookerse

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An aerial view of Greg Lookerse’s recent exhibition, Everything is God to Me and Everything is Dust to Me, at Kington Gallery.

Greg Lookerse‘s solo exhibition, Everything is God to Me and Everything is Dust to Me, at Kingston Gallery from December 2-27, concluded his experience as the gallery’s Emerging Artist in 2015. His exhibition demonstrated a compelling balance of craftsmanship and philosophical inquiry.

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Greg Lookerse at his performance,  when all the ice in the world melts maybe it will leave a beautiful mark, in conjunction with Kingston’s September 2015 exhibition, All Natural.

Inspired by books by Annie Dillard and Teilhard de Chardin, (find details on our website), Lookerse created a space where he regularly performed a ritual of teaching a stone to talk. Within the hexagonal structure, he papered the gallery floor with pages from Dillard’s book, Teaching a Stone to Talk. The gallery lights fell upon the pages layered in a grid so precisely arranged that it precluded any question of whether, by taking the book apart and putting the pages on the floor, he may mean any disrespect. Rather, the pages suggested an invitation to read the book in an alternative way, as though we may be able to enter the space to scan the entire text at once. Over time, the pages became covered in spatters of black ink, obscuring the words and providing visual traces suggesting the many times the artist lifted the stone from where it sat in a vat of ink. He also marked each attempt to teach the stone with small ticks on a calendar.

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Installation view, Everything is God to Me and Everything is Dust to Me, Kingston Gallery, December 2015.

Accompanying this arrangement was a series of altar stones (stones carved to contain a mixture of charcoal and raw honey), displayed in glass cloches. To provide further background into his thoughts, Lookerse’s artist statement is also in this post.

Ambitious, thoughtful, and talented, Greg often provided a voice of calm clarity among the membership. We wish him the very best in his promising career.

Artist Statement

Everything is God to Me and Everything is Dust to Me

My work is always inspired by literature. As an avid reader I often find the need to explore the author’s ideas in a less narrative and more visual manner.

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Altar Stone, 2015, stone, charcoal, raw honey, glass cloche

This series of sculptures and durational performance space form a body of work that continues my practice of contemplating literature.
Teilhard de Chardin wrote, “Everything is God to me; everything is dust to me…” in his book The Divine Miliue. As the driving concept behind this body of work the paradoxical notions of faith and doubt collide. To the devoted theologian a rock with black honey may stand for a symbol of a god’s providence, a miracle, or perhaps a god itself. To the skeptic it is just a stone with honey in it.

The most fascinating part of this dichotomy is that both views find meaning in the stones; whether because of a transcendent interpretation or because of an aesthetic transformation.
In a similar narrative, author Annie Dillard describes a man living on an island who keeps a small stone under a piece of leather on a shelf. When he is alone he performs a ritual to teach the stone to talk. In her book Teaching A Stone to Talk she reflects upon this ritual:

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Altar Stone, 2015, stone, charcoal, raw honey, glass cloche


“I assume that like any other meaningful effort, the ritual involves sacrifice, the suppression of self-consciousness, and a certain precise tilt of the will, so that the will becomes transparent and hollow, a channel for the work. I wish him well. It is a noble work, and beats, from any angle, selling shoes.”

Perhaps materials and items hold transcendent meaning. Perhaps they are simply things human beings can mold or shape. Either way, the actions and rituals we perform with these objects changes us and our perceptions of them. The cell is ready for me to enter and the materials are waiting.

-Greg Lookerse, 2015

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Alter Stones, 2015, stone, charcoal, raw honey, glass cloches.

Re/Sounding Text

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Joining Susan Alport is 2014 MFA/ Emerging Artist, Eugene LaRochelle, with his exhibit I Love You in the Center Gallery. As you follow the suite of silkscreen prints around the room, a crescendo builds with the repetition of the phrase “There are no gay people in Korea”. The text not only becomes image but also sound, a litany, a chorus, both inviting and implicating the viewer as she works her way around the gallery space. As it builds in density, the text becomes less clear but more implicit. The artist wants to have a dialogue with the viewer and for the work to engender that conversation.

LaRochelle invites the audience to see and hear his concerns about pain as a universal theme. He aims to create work that frames and provides a window into conversations on pain and conflict, allowing the observer to eavesdrop and gain an intimate, even invasive view of the private lives, quarrels and suffering of others.

This is the last week for the three October exhibits – work by Eugene LaRochelle, Susan Alport and Elif Soyer, which run through November 2.

Don’t miss these shows!

Image: Eugene LaRochelle, Denial #1, Silkscreen Print, 22 x 14.75 inches, 2014.

Kingston Gallery Emerging Artist’s Program

The Kingston Gallery, in Boston’s South end, is inviting recent MFA
graduates to apply to our one-year MFA/Emerging Artist Program.

The MFA/Emerging Artist Program is specifically designed for recent MFA
graduates. The one year program acts as a stepping stone into the
professional art world of exhibiting and operating a gallery. The
program requires that you attend monthly gallery meetings, participate
in the business and running of the gallery, and gallery sit once a
month. The initiation fee and monthly dues are waived. After one year,
this commitment to the gallery culminates in a one-person show in our
Center Gallery.

Interested applicants should send 20 images (digital, slides or DVD) of work completed in the last 2 years, a resume, and recommendations from 2 artists or professors who know you and can comment on your seriousness and responsibility.

Application materials are due June 15th every year. Please include a
S.A.S.E. if you would like your images returned.

If you have any questions, please contact Ilona Anderson
ilonapainter@verizon.net or 617.965.2276, or come by the gallery.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

Ilona Anderson
MFA/Emerging Artist Program Coordinator

About the Kingston Gallery:
The Kingston Gallery is an artist-run cooperative gallery, founded in
1982. We are located at 450 Harrison Ave., #43, Boston, MA 02118,
situated amongst many other Contemporary Galleries and artists studios.
For more information about the gallery, please visit http://www.kingstongallery.com