July 2018 Openings at IA&A at Hillyer

By Editorial Team on July 2, 2018
Ants Marching by Mills Brown. Courtesy of IA&A at Hillyer.
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Opening Reception: Friday, July 6 from 6pm to 9pm
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Free, $8 suggested donation

Hillyer presents three new solo exhibitions opening on July’s First Friday, featuring new works by local artists Mills Brown, Veronica Szalus, and Braxton Congrove. Guests can meet the artists at the opening reception on Friday, July 6th from 6-9pm, during Dupont Circle’s First Friday Gallery Walk, sponsored by The Bier Baron Tavern and Comedy Loft.

Brown’s Farther Along uses collage and found objects to reflect on the desire to protect through acts of collecting, preserving and embellishing by capturing the feeling of a place through the small, intimate and ornamental refuges that she constructs. Szalus’ installation, Audio Playback, revolves around the outdated technology of the cassette tape, using the content within the cassette to be stretched up and fanned out, recorded on, and played back, serving as a metaphor for something both obsolete and relevant. Standing on Rugs with Goose is a fiction based directly on Congrove’s everyday life, using the materiality of performance and the staging of an exhibition space to build and populate a nebulous world for the viewer to enter and be immersed into.

Ants Marching by Mills Brown. Courtesy of IA&A at Hillyer.

Mills Brown | Farther Along
Brown’s work begins with a desire to understand and capture the feeling of place. She creates spaces that are personal and intimate, suggestive of memory, overflowing with ornamental pattern and decorated with found objects and plants. Reflecting on her childhood in low country South Carolina, Brown is influenced by fairytales, magical realism, and Southern gothic. She tries to take the disjointed nature of collage and breathe a sense of dreamlike narrative into her work. As a teacher, Brown is fascinated by children’s desires to collect and protect, which echoes in her own artistic tendencies. They are constantly picking up small objects to hide in their pockets—plastic litter, delicate petals, and tiny living creatures—all treasures in their eyes. They want to touch everything they see, but aren’t sure how to interact with these precious objects. They want to possess everything they find, but can’t safely hold on to anything for long. Farther Along reflects this desire to protect through acts of collecting, preserving and embellishing. She tries to understand and capture the feeling of a place through the small, intimate and ornamental refuges that she constructs. What’s left is an intimate memorial for the things under her care, an imagined story of their lives and homes.

Audio Playback by Veronica Szalus. Courtesy of IA&A at Hillyer.

Veronica Szalus | Audio Playback
Veronica Szalus produces site-specific installations that incorporate the influence of her study in industrial design and deep interest in creating environmental pieces that explore the phenomenon of physical and metaphysical transition. Through the process of deconstructing a technology of the past, Szalus explores impermanence and transition with the intersection of man-made materials, environmental factors and the passage of time. Her installation, Audio Playback, revolves around an object once commonly used and now almost forgotten, the compact cassette tape, an encased analog magnetic plastic film used to record audio. Throughout this exhibition, content within the cassette is stretched up and fanned out, recorded, and played back serving as a metaphor for something both obsolete and relevant.

In My Room (detail) by Braxton Congrove. courtesy of IA&A at Hillyer. 

Braxton Congrove | Standing on Rugs with Goose
Standing on Rugs with Goose is a fiction based directly on Braxton Congrove’s everyday life. She uses the materiality of performance and the staging of an exhibition space to build and populate a nebulous world for the viewer to enter and be immersed into. This world is created from a vocabulary of playful color, perspective shifts and cozy textures. Within this world there is a proposition of play, a return to adolescent self in a sense, and the power of humor alongside the pathetic nature of these sculptural objects. Braxton employs discarded materials and mediums in attempt to echo and play with domestic hobby craft connotations of flocking and papier-mâché. These craft processes are used to make nonfunctional objects that appear to invite use. This separation and closeness are like a screen of her own design for the viewer to see a more playful and wild world.

Gallery Hours:

  • Tuesday-Friday: 12pm to 6pm
  • Saturday-Monday: 12pm to 5pm
  • and by appointment

IA&A at Hillyer is located at 9 Hillyer Ct. NW. For more informaiton, visit http://athillyer.org/.