Timothy Taylor is pleased to present an exhibition of textile artist Christy Matson and sculptor Taylor Kibby, Los Angeles-based artists who each explore the intersection of craft, material, conceptual art, and abstraction. Matson and Kibby are both influenced by the California landscape, from its palette and quality of light to the dualities of its urban and natural environments. Together, their works interrogate the structures of power that have created and reinforced the hierarchies between craft and fine art.
Christy Matson creates large-scale, abstract textile works that she weaves using a Jacquard loom and hand-painted paper thread, which is then stretched across a canvas. Every work begins as a watercolour or drawing, and the resulting textiles maintain painterly qualities, echoing the lyricism of Abstract Expressionist paintings and the laddered geometries of Bauhaus designs. Matson consciously imbues her work with the associations of fabric and patterns across millennia, aware that the history of textile art contains marginalised stories of artistic production–from the way in which the ancient art form of weaving is historically sidelined as 'craft,' with 'craft' serving as a synonym for work done by women, to the legacy of the appropriation of textile patterns by Modernist painters. Her approach to weaving reflects this complex history, ranging from waffle weaves and surplus thread used in contemporary fast fashion, to techniques inspired by ancient textiles and patterns found on ceramic shards. Fascinated by the way similar motifs developed in isolated communities that did not interact, Matson views their appearance as representative of a collective unconscious.
Taylor Kibby creates delicate yet malleable stoneware sculptures, comprised of ceramic elements resembling woven chains. Like Ruth Asawa, Kibby makes sculptures that balance material dualities of rigid and flexible, hard and soft, challenging conventional notions of sculpture through their lightness and delicacy. The flexible quality of her sculptures articulates the physicality and presence of the human body in space, juxtaposing the force and weight of chains with the kinetic movement and softness embodied in Kibby's interwoven ceramic elements. The repetition involved in shaping each of her intricate sculptures allows ideas to manifest in abstract forms or 'interruptions' which break the chain patterns organically, as if dredged up from the unconscious, privileging the role of chance and the freedom of uncertainty.
Taylor Kibby (b. 1992) lives and works in Los Angeles, California. She was educated at Bard College, Massachusetts before graduating with an MFA in Applied Craft and Design from Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Art and Craft. Kibby has been featured in group exhibitions at NonFinito Gallery, New York; A-B Projects, Los Angeles; Emma Scully Gallery, Los Angeles; Jorge Mendez Gallery, Palm Springs and Furthermore Gallery, Portland. Her work is held in significant private collections internationally and in the public collection of the Santa Monica Proper Hotel, Los Angeles.
Christy Matson (b. 1979, Seattle, Washington) currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California. She holds a BFA in Studio Art from the University of Washington as well as an MFA from California College of the Arts, and was previously a tenured professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work is held in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, the Smithsonian Museum of American Art's Renwick Gallery, Washington, D.C.; and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles. Matson has been the subject of many solo museum exhibitions, including: Christy Matson: Crossings at the Cranbrook Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan (2019); and Rock, Paper Scissors at the Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, California (2018);. She has also been featured in dozens of group exhibitions at institutions including the Craft and Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Museum, Washington, D.C.; Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee; Asheville Art Museum, Asheville; The Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; and the Museum of Contemporary Craft, Portland. She is the subject of an upcoming solo exhibition at the Milwaukee Art Museum, opening October 2020.
Press release courtesy Timothy Taylor.