Jenny Brillhart: Material

April 8, 2011 - May 7, 2011

Opening reception April 8, 2011, 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Dorsch Gallery is pleased to present a solo show called Material by Jenny Brillhart Friday, April 8, 2011 - Saturday, May 7, 2011. This exhibition will be strikingly conceptual in its trajectory. Brillhart departs from her tightly academic painting style, seeking to pursue her concerns with the spaces she inhabits or passes through, the light that fills them, and their walls. The show consists of drywall paintings, collages, and gritty black-and-white images.

Brillhart arranges pieces of sheetrock in small open boxes; with these drywall paintings, she paints a trace of the shadows cast within the box as she works in her studio in a warehouse in Little Haiti. She uses daylight shadows filtered through her window, because, she says, the shadows are softer. When these drywall paintings are shown in Material, they will have two sets of shadows, one recalling the time of making and the other marking this moment in time, the time of viewing.

To understand how exciting these pieces are, it is important to note that the past few years witness a tectonic shift in Brillhart's work. Her painting Pink Wall (2008), included in a group exhibition called Tuttle at David Castillo Gallery in January 2008, shows a closely cropped detail of the wall of a concrete building, whose features are a vent, two windows, electrical piping and a metal electrical box. The composition is austere. There is a pull between the abstraction indicated in her composition and the representational role of her style.

Since then she's worked through several approaches, gradually moving in a more conceptual direction. With this show, Brillhart has found the will to set aside entirely the restrictions that come with painting naturalistically. She stated, "the paint was getting in the way." Brillhart explores the potential of her looseness in her recent works, which combine a variety of media, points of view, and levels of abstraction. She takes the looseness further, focusing in on a few subtle elements, letting each work resonate more with less. She seeks out substance in nothingness, where substance is material and value, and nothingness is light.

Brillhart graduated Cum Laude from the New York Academy of Art in 2003. Before that she studied with The Art Students League in New York, briefly attended the University of New Hampshire and gained her BA from Smith College in Massachusetts. She is published in several places including the Miami Contemporary Artists book by Paul Clemence and Julie Davidow and in New American Paintings, a juried annual publication. Her work was included in New Work Miami, curated by Rene Morales and Peter Boswell, at Miami Art Museum in Summer 2010. She has exhibited in New York, Miami and Berlin. Her work is currently on view at Dorsch Gallery, Miami and Kuckei and Kuckei Gallery Berlin. She lives and works in Miami.

Jenny Brillhart

Installation view

Jenny Brillhart

Parking Strip, 2011, Mixed media on paper and panel, 31 x 41 inches

Jenny Brillhart

2nd Floor, 2011, Mixed media on paper and panel, 90 x 40 inches

Jenny Brillhart

71st Street Apartments, 2011, Mixed media, 53 x 45 inches