PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Dallas April 2022

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Page 57 of 131

Biennial in 2000, often features cast- bronze or resin sculptures of everyday objects, bed sheets to books. During the pandemic, Havel had a surplus of cardboard boxes due to online shopping — perfect material for his African gray parrot, Hannah, to shred. Hannah's engagement with these materials formed what Havel calls "parrot architecture" and became the basis of this show, paired with the artist's signature totemic sculptures. One also senses an environmental statement here about consumer packaging and endangered species, which include the African gray parrot. Doroshenko also invited a visionary creator to Dallas for his Texas debut: Alabama-born Lonnie Holley. This polymath talent is fresh from highly praised shows last year in the Hamptons at the Parrish Art Museum and South Etna Montauk Foundation, both exhibitions sparked by his residency at the Elaine de Kooning House in East Hampton (the space owned by Dallas Art Fair co-founder Chris Byrne). A cult figure for his dual chops with found objects and as a musician, here Holley explores ceramics — the result of a residency at Cerámica Suro in Guadalajara, Mexico. This seventh child of 27 said of his art practice during our 2020 interview, "I was thinking about my ancestors and how hard they worked to get their voices heard and how easy it was to keep their ideas silenced. Even when the swords of oppression are turned on us, we have to keep fighting for our roots. Because we are our grandchildren's roots." Two less-well-known artists are also making their museum debuts. NYC-based Borna Sammak engages the audience with images of odd, unforgettable vignettes that completely upend our reality — a metaphor for these scattershot times — in "America, Nice Place." The Brooklyn artist comments on Internet tropes and embracing NYC's deli culture, T-shirt decal mania, and Pop sculptural versions of a collage/ assemblage sensibility. He first achieved fame for his 2009 inaugural non-high- art exhibition at Best Buy in downtown Manhattan — as anti-establishment as it gets. International curator Alison M. Gingeras, remembered for her 2019 DC exhibition "John Currin: My Life as a Man," organizes Sammak's first appearance in Texas. Rounding out this foursome is California native Natalie Wadlington, now based in College Station. Wadlington paints with a lurid palette that contributes to her enigmatic narrative, which challengers us to decipher the environmental messages playing out in her hyperreal, cartoon- inflected canvases between human and animal protagonists. The Contemporary's Emily Edwards curates. All exhibitions on view April 16 – August 21, at the Dallas Contemporary, ALL IMAGES COURTESY THE ARTISTS. BORNA SAMMAK ALSO COURTESY JTT, NYC; AND SADIE COLES HQ, LONDON. NATALIE WADLINGTON ALSO COURTESY LIBRARY STREET COLLECTIVE, DETROIT. From top: Borna Sammak's Not Yet Titled (Couch), 2018 Natalie Wadlington's Digging in the Rain, 2021 Page 54, top: Joe Havel's Pessimist, 2021 (Continued from page 54) 56

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