In our first collaboration with Helen Day Art Center, 571 Projects is pleased to announce Intergalactic Current, an exhibition of collaged paintings by visual artist Sally Gil, opening on September 16 and on view through November 13 at Helen Day Art Center, 90 Pond Street, Stowe, Vermont. While Gil works in a variety of formats, from small to immersive, this exhibition focuses on the artist’s large works. In addition, she will create a site-specific installation. Collage and paint applied directly onto the gallery wall, it will last only for the duration of the exhibition.
Sally Gil’s technicolor utopias draw the viewer into complex worlds where iconic images form unexpected poetic passages and nonlinear story lines. Sourced from a variety of print media, she explores visual and word associations, puns, reversed images, changes in scale and in perspective. Seen from afar, there is a sense of the cosmos, the Big Bang, star dust. Up close, thoughtfully juxtaposed elements engage us with detail and intimacy. Choosing to paint over, embellish, or riff off of these elements, she fully appropriates and transforms the found imagery. Gil’s process is both intuitive and meticulous. She employs happenstance and fortuitous combinations as a means to reveal truths; at the heart of her art making lies trust in the process and the materials at hand.
At times a kind of nostalgia bubbles to the surface, and while the works are not intended as autobiographical documents, each holds the indelible marks of the maker and the things that have meaning for her. One of Gil’s exhibited works, Two Stellar Women (2013-2015, collage, acrylic, casein, and house paint on canvas, 58 x 60 in.), takes its title from the images of Shirley Chisholm and Mary Leakey who appear in the piece. Both women, notable for their exceptional pioneering achievements, are historically significant. In Gil’s painting they play concurrent personal and compositional roles, as iconic figures and as integral structural elements. Many of the images that Gil uses are archetypal: examples of flora, fauna, places, and architecture, are dotted throughout, merged by the artist’s careful painting. Discrete fragments are linked, holding a wealth of signifiers, and each work rewards time spent with it. The more you look, the more you see. Personal and universal, Sally Gil’s work is generous: it allows each viewer a way in.
Brooklyn-based visual artist Sally Gil was born and raised in Bennington, VT. She received her Bachelor of Arts at UC San Diego and her Masters of Fine Arts at Hunter College, CUNY. She has had solo exhibitions at The Bennington Museum, Bennington, VT; Geary Contemporary, NYC; 571 Projects, NYC; University of North Carolina, Charlotte; and Dean Bergen Gallery, Brooklyn. Her work has been featured in group exhibitions at The Brooklyn Museum; The Rotunda Gallery. Brooklyn; and White Columns, NYC, among other venues. The artist was a Fellow at Apexart (2013) to São Paolo, Brazil and a Visiting Artist at The University of North Carolina, Charlotte (2010) and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (2001). Her work is included in the US State Department’s Arts in Embassies program, in Brazzaville, Congo (2014-2016).