The Vision of Care

Filed in Exhibitions, Past Exhibitions by on January 7, 2021
About the Juror

Robert R. Shane received his Ph.D. in Art History and Criticism from Stony Brook University where he studied with Donald Kuspit.  Dr. Shane’s art criticism has appeared in The Brooklyn Rail and his scholarly research has been published in Hypatia.  His current book project in process is Mirroring Mothers: Witnessing Maternal Subjectivity in Contemporary Art.

Dr. Shane is Associate Professor of Art History at the College of Saint Rose in Albany, New York;  former Managing Editor of the journal Art Criticismpublished by Stony Brook University;  and a frequent contributor of essays and entries on art for books published by Phaidon Press, London.

The Vision of Care
Juried & Curated by Robert Shane
April 9 – May 23, 2021
Main Gallery

23 artists making work about parenting, nature, and loss show us how to care for one another in an exhibition that responds with sensitivity to our present moment. Juried by Brooklyn Rail critic Robert R. Shane.

Fern Apfel
Michelle Brandemuehl
Courtney Dudley
Ashley Garrett
Fran Goodwin
Courtney Haeick
Yasemin Kackar-Demirel
Kahori Kamiya
Carole Kunstadt
Linda Lauro-Lazin
Madison LaVallee
Jadina Lilien
Dorothea Osborn
Rob O’Neil
Lisa Poquette
Pam Poquette
Kelsey Renko
Richard Scherr
Christopher Skura
Rebekah Tolley
Hana Van der Kolk
Hanna Washburn
Brian Wood

The Vision of Care brings together work by 23 artists working across various media to highlight the role art plays, to use the words of care theorists Joan C. Tronto and Bernice Fisher, “in maintaining and repairing our world so that we can live in it as well as possible.” 

Artist/mothers lead this exhibition in an homage to the many pioneers, such as artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles and theorist Sara Ruddick, who for decades have been using maternal experiences to develop new ways of thinking about the ethics of care. Rebekah Tolley’s two new works created for The Vision of Care spotlight the crisis of inequity in our childcare system during the pandemic, which has made clear that those who care for young children in or outside of the home are essential workers. Kahori Kamiya’s explosive wall sculpture embodies the joy and struggles of breastfeeding, offering an antidote to the feelings of guilt that sometimes accompany the latter.

Against a backdrop of both climate crisis and the quest for outdoor solace during the pandemic, many artists have responded by making works inspired by nature, including Ashley Garrett in her intimate abstractions culled from her experiences in the environs surrounding her upstate New York studio, and Rob O’Neil and Jadina Lilien in their respective photographs capturing close-ups of fragile and beautiful moments outdoors. All three artists point to the need to care for the environment and show the ways the environment can care for us, physically and emotionally. 

Several artists in The Vision of Care share personal experiences of long-term caretaking for ill loved ones, including painter Fern Apfel, photographer Frances Goodwin, and sculptor Linda Lauro-Lazin. The latter two artists also provide us models of grief after losing a loved one to terminal illness, models we need now as a nation and as a world in mourning. 

In abstract pieces by Pam Poquette and Dorothea Osborn, stitching or collaging begin to act as metaphors for repair and care. Christopher Skura and Michelle Brandemuehl’s geometric abstraction slows viewers down to become attuned to the subtle relationships between forms, offering lessons in looking we can take beyond the gallery as we become attuned to the subtle needs of each other.


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