Anna Betbeze & Keltie Ferris: Shag

2 - 31 July 2010
Installation Views
Press release

The gallery is pleased to announce Shag, an off-site project featuring the works of Anna Betbeze and Keltie Ferris .


As the inaugural exhibition in its summer project space located in the Prenzlauer Berg neighborhood of Berlin, Horton Gallery is pleased to present Shag, featuring work by Anna Betbeze and Keltie Ferris. Kimono (2010), by Betbeze, admits to the decorative associations that have always plagued the tapestry as an art form, employing the technique and aesthetic unique to shag rug carpeting, first popular in the late 1960s. However, two elements render the piece useless as décor and cement its status as an art object; its peculiar shape – it is cut like a Japanese yukata kimono – and that it is dyed in a palette and pattern that is specific neither to the tradition of the kimono or general household tastes. Kimono is clear comment on domesticity, femininity, and the interconnectedness of the two.


Keltie Ferris’s paintings – two on view – perform a similar subversion of their own medium: painting. Her use of spray paint confronts a tradition that has shunned, separated and arranged certain visual techniques and materials in a strict hierarchy. Ferris’s work too is born of a similar tension between tradition and transgressive technique, transposed from other, ‘lesser’ forms. This self-reflexive quality in Ferris and Betbeze makes them compatible to be shown side by side, but it is the strong linguistic drive in both artists that ties the work in Shag together. Meant as a double entendre, alluding to the rug and the act, the tapestry is the show’s namesake. Ferris’s work too, often encoded with references to sexual identity, relies on humorous, kitschy titles that highlight content within abstraction, a zinger to drive the punch. The pun title of the show brings these conceits to the fore, freshly re-focusing the work of these two artists.


Anna Betbeze (b. 1980, Mobile, AL) lives and works in Brooklyn. She received a MFA from Yale University in New Haven, CT and a BFA from University of Georgia, Athens. Her work has been included in exhibitions at Kate Werble, PPOW, and Ramiken Crucible, all New York, NY. Her work has recently been included in Time Out New York and The New Yorker.


Keltie Ferris (b. 1977, Louisville, KY) lives and works in Brooklyn. She received a MFA from Yale University in New Haven, CT and a BFA from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD). In addition to Horton Gallery, she has been featured in exhibitions at the Nerman Museum, Overland Park, KS; Deitch Projects and D’Amelio Terras, both New York, NY; David Castillo, Miami; and Pilar Corrias, London, England. Her work has recently been discussed in The New York Times, Modern Painters, Artforum, and Details, among others. She is the recipient of both a Jacob Javits Fellowship and a Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant. Her work was the subject of a solo show at the Kemper Museum, Kansas City, MO, for which a publication is available through the gallery.