press release



56 Bogart Street Brooklyn NY 11206                               

Opening reception: Friday, April 10, 7-9 PM  

Exhibition Dates: April 10 - May 3, 2015          




Björn Meyer Ebrecht, Alma-Isa Barrett, Joe Amrhein & Audra Wolowiec   


Studio10 presents “Pretext”, a group exhibition of work by Bjoern Meyer-Ebrecht, Isa Barrett, Joe Amrhein and Audra Wolowiec. The work in this exhibition bears a relationship to text and language and examines a place of becoming in the margins of language. 

“They were less than words, just loose, meaningless syllables that flowed and merged, were fertilized and reborn in a single being only to break apart immediately afterwards, breathing, breathing...." - Clarice Lispector, Near to the Wild Heart 

Audra Wolowiec’s installation Habere, 2015 derives its title from the Latin meaning to inhabit. It consists of two speakers embedded in drywall on either side of a booth-like enclosure. Each side emits the recording of a breath. As the recordings synch in and out with each other the listener becomes aware of their own breath, implicating themselves in the dynamic.  This shared experience initiates a pre-verbal place for experience. Our breath is exhaled from the body and even in the absence of words communicates our condition. The architecture of the installation adds to the heightened, wordless and intimate exchange holding the viewer as if in the pages of a book.

Joe Amrhein employs language appropriated from art criticism using the visual vocabulary he learned as a sign painter. He uses the materials of enamel and gold leaf on mylar for Swampland, 2009. Amrhein, distances his sources through formal arrangement, fragmentation and layering of the text. Integrating art criticism into the object it describes, Amrhein speaks the notion articulated by Robert Smithson who stated, “One must remember that writing on art replaces presence by absence by substituting the abstraction of language for the real thing.” In recent works Amrhein has incorporated translation into his text-based practice. 

Alma-Isa Barrett uses late 19th to mid-20th century secondhand and found books in her practice of peeling printed words and images with Scotch tape while still preserving the texts. Some scientists maintain that the triboluminescence generated by peeling a roll of Scotch tape is the same power that lights the sun. Further, Soviet scientists ascertained that to peel tape In a vacuum is to produce X-rays. She selects single pages or complete texts of technical reference books, various literary works, and shorthand manuals among others. Barrett further augments and obscures the original features and illustrations of the page using archival black ink pens, straight rulers and various architectural templates. She leaves many books empty and uses a number of them as palimpsests for notes and drawing. She draws meticulously and obsessively on the sheets in geometric patterns creating repeating symmetries and relationships - some covering the text entirely with a blackened rectangle of transcendental mark making. The removed text is further hidden when the tape is wound into tight spools of varying sizes. Barrett's practice becomes an etymology borrowed from the language of others and reconfigured into alternative patterns of her own construct. The drawings become documents of multidimensional spaces.

In Björn Meyer-Ebrecht‘s work text appears as physical presence in form of discarded books, opening up the artist’s studio practice to a wider space of ideas and ideologies. The vocabulary of modernism becomes the tool to investigate not only form, color and geometry but also language through discarded books he considers at the end of their lifespan. His wooden sculptures are painted in bold delineations of color referencing constructivism and de stijl compositions.. Atop each sculpture is an aged, soft-back book secured in a freestanding and upright position.The wood stands are succinct architectural structures matched to the graphic identity of the book they host.Also included are geometric wall compositions of cloth book covers. The books are cut up and reassembled into flattened forms play with the illusionistic form of an opened book with splayed binding, the object exists simultaneously as an iconic image, and also remnant of the book itself and conjure the loaded visual and philosophical history of modernism.

For more information and images, please contact Larry Greenberg at (718) 852-4396). 

Gallery hours: Thursday through Sunday 1 - 6 pm or by appointment


The gallery is across the street from the Bogart Street exit at the L Train Morgan stop.

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