August 31 – December 10, 2016
Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art
The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz presents In/Animate: Recent Work by Myra Mimlitsch-Gray, an exhibition by internationally renowned master metalsmith, Myra Mimlitsch-Gray. Curated by Akiko Busch, a distinguished writer on design and the environment, In/Animate will be on display in The Dorsky Museum’s Sara Bedrick Gallery. The public opening reception will be held Saturday, Sept. 10, from 5–7 p.m.
In/Animate collects more than 50 unique works that together explore a variety of artistic processes in iron, copper, brass, silver and enameled steel, sparking new conversations about how household objects can express ideas about presentation, utility and class. Mimlitsch-Gray’s works all possess a deep sense of materiality. She was trained in the craft tradition, and describes her intention as “acquiring mastery while deconstructing the model.” Her works are distinguished by the physical processes of their making – her hand wrought, hand shaped, hand hammered, hand finished pieces are elegantly conceived and immaculately crafted, advancing ideas about form and utility to a new level. Mimlitsch-Gray’s domestic artifacts suggest a coalescence of body and thing, conveying the mutability of the animate and inanimate and reflecting the intimacy between people and the objects they use. A spoon can be a lip; a dangling twist of fabric is a vein. Here we find form and materials ordinarily associated with sufficiency and comfort recast to convey new and unsettling meanings.
In/Animate is accompanied by a fully illustrated, 72-page catalogue featuring texts by Myra Mimlitsch-Gray, exhibition curator Akiko Busch and Daniel Belasco, the curator of exhibitions and programs of The Dorsky Museum.
Myra Mimlitsch-Gray holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from Cranbrook Academy of Art and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Philadelphia College of Art. She is the recipient of the 2016 American Craft Council Award and an inductee of its College of Fellows. Other awards include the 2014 Individual Artist Fellowship in Crafts/Sculpture from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the 2012 United States Artists Glasgow Fellowship in Craft and Traditional Arts, and Individual Artist Fellowships from the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation (1995), the National Endowment for the Arts (1994) and the New York Foundation for the Arts (1997, 2005). In 1998 she was honored for her work as an educator at SUNY New Paltz with a SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2014 the Metal Museum in Memphis, Tennessee named Mimlitsch-Gray “Master Metalsmith” and presented her first museum retrospective, Staging Form. Her work can be found in the collections of Cranbrook Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, Michigan; Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, New York; Mint Museum of Craft and Design. Charlotte, North Carolina; Museum of Fine Arts. Boston, Massachusetts; Museum of Arts and Design. New York, New York; National Museums of Scotland; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Racine Art Museum. Racine, Wisconsin; National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution; Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art. SUNY-New Paltz, New York, Victoria and Albert Museum. London, England and Yale University Art Gallery. New Haven, Connecticut among others.