Magnus Maxine: "The Mind is Kind: Dipped, Died, Dried, Machine Pieced & Tied"

30 October - 4 December 2021

Sebastian Gladstone is excited to announce Magnus Maxine’s solo exhibition,“The Mind is Kind: Dipped, Died, Dried, Machine Pieced & Tied” which will run from October 30th to December 4th with an opening on October 30th from 6-9pm. Magnus Maxine is a craft-based conceptual artist whose process-based practice addresses trauma, oppression, and labor as they relate to personal and collective experiences. Her exhibition at Sebastian Gladstone falls into two categories: quilts and paper works. 


The quilts are cut and sewn through a labor-intensive process with bedding from Military barracks and the LA Prison System. The process of staining the linens is ritualized through a process of natural plant-based fabric dyes developed in Maxine’s outdoor studio in her backyard; part alchemy, part Youtube-science, the processes for dyeing the quilts constantly change due to weather, material, and environment, thus creating an extremely handmade and varied result gleaned from materials found in and around her home. A reflection of the process that creates them, these quilts pay homage to the invisible labor of the feminine and of oppressed peoples, offering a meditative-like reprieve through their visual experience. A sight to behold in person, the contrast of the unique hues and dyeing effects along with the background of the materials creates a powerful statement visually as well as conceptually. 


The artist’s paper works take this concept a step further into the personal realm through a process of time based paintings reminiscent of quilts.  The works consist of newspapers blended into pulp and added to the front page of The New York and Los Angeles Times. Through this direct erasure of the news media, Magnus presents an alternative to the cycles of anxiety, trauma, and fear created by the daily reportage, and replaces that with mandala-like paintings made for reflection and calming. The works are stamped with fruit stickers from the produce her child eats. These stickers serve two purposes--first they appropriate the historical nature of male-dominated abstract painting and subvert the seriousness of the paintings themselves, and second they mark time passing while the paintings are being made; as the works develop and nourishment is consumed, the stickers are added. 

Maxine’s visual language assumes a unique and introspective perspective that is ambitiously conversational with her historical counterparts. The tactile nature of the quilts and paintings oscillate between  painting and sculpture, landing somewhere in between. This dichotomy of flat and dimensional, rough and smooth, adds another nuanced quality to the work enhancing the viewing experience.


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