Lucia Hierro: Objetos Específicos
Sean Horton (presents) is pleased to announce the first Texas exhibition by New York artist Lucia Hierro, Objetos Específicos, in the gallery on West Jefferson Boulevard in Oak Cliff.
Taking their cue from the writings of Donald Judd, Hierro’s sculptural and pictorial objects play with the “specificity” that Judd claimed as Minimalist painting and sculpture’s formal refusal of illusionism. In Hierro’s hands, the social specificity of objects becomes a means of cultural cryptography. Her specific objects include groceries and sundries, packaged snacks, magazines, weekly circular ads, old-master paintings, and drugstore receipts. Rendered as soft sculptures à la Claes Oldenburg, or affixed as decals directly to the wall in an echo of Tom Wesselman’s still lifes, Hierro’s objects speak to shopping habits coded by class, gender, and ethnicity, and, indeed, to the way such identities result from a constant and ever-shifting negotiation with the products of commodity consumerism and culture.
Lucia Hierro: Objetos Específicos includes works from her ongoing Mercado series of oversized translucent tote bags filled with selections of soft-sculpture items. As if the choice of particular shoppers, each bag seems to convey the personality of an individual, identifiable in part by the markers of education, taste, and tradition ostensibly purchased. We can also see each, in part, as a self-portrait. Signifiers of the artist’s Dominican American heritage and upbringing in the uptown Manhattan neighborhoods of Washington Heights and Inwood may include Goya beans, Embajador cocoa, and Ponds cold cream. A bag of circulars reflects the neighborhood around her studio in the South Bronx. Yet, equally, a representation of Leonardo’s Salvator Mundi or a receipt for quinoa point to other characteristic facets of the life of an active artist of a certain generation. Identity, in the shopping bags of the Mercado series, appears always contingent, in flux, surprising, and sometimes opaque.
Other works hang on the walls in the form of giant anodized aluminum clip racks, as if from the corner store, holding huge bags of Chifles plaintain chips or Baken-ets pork rinds. These combine Olderburgean or Warholian Pop with the formal clarity of Judd’s Minimalist stacks of ascending boxes. A mural work relates to Hierro’s previous installations, as well as to her Bodegón series of appliqued still lifes on stretched felt, which combine household products with printouts from broadcast TV, computer screens, and social media. The title of these refers not only to the glorious tradition of Spanish still life painting, but to the bodegas, the humble corner markets of New York themselves.
Born in New York City, Lucia Hierro received a BFA from SUNY Purchase (2010) and an MFA from Yale School of Art (2013). Her work has been included in solo and group exhibitions at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, Sugar Hill Children's Museum of Art and Storytelling, and Elizabeth Dee Gallery, all in New York; Casa Quién, Santo Domingo; the Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco; and Jeffrey Deitch Los Angeles. Residencies include: Yaddo, Redbull Arts in Detroit, Fountainhead Residency, Bronx Museum’s Artist in the Market program, and Casa Quién. Her work is part of the JP Morgan Chase art collection and the Rennie collection in Vancouver. Hierro lives and works in New York.
The exhibition of Lucia Hierro’s work is organized by Joseph R. Wolin, an independent curator and critic in New York.