Stan Squirwell, The Alchemist
Stan Squirewell’s Solo Exhibition opens in Harlem on September 14
NEW YORK, NY (September 6, 2016) – HARLEM, NY. Art in Flux inaugurates the fall schedule with a solo exhibition featuring Stan Squirewell opening on Wednesday, September 14 from 6:00-9:00PM in an intimate storefront gallery located at 163 Malcolm X Blvd between 118 and 119th Streets.
The Atari video games from Stan Squirewell’s childhood may have sparked his inquisitive and scientific mind to search for a higher power at a very young age and he began to explore this quest through creating. Squirewell uses his intense curiosity and tenacious research in indigenous cultures, sacred geometry, science, and binary coding to present a commentary on race, identity, memory, and life’s dualities. He tackles these themes taking influence from science fiction novels, and ancient mythological stories. Building on his discoveries, his newest works included in this show, are also heavily influenced by a recent revelation of his paternal ancestry. In these multimedia artworks Squirewell fuses imagery, photographs, and motifs from ancient civilizations to create collages set on wooden frames. He then burns them ceremoniously and adds markings that have been appearing in his practice subconsciously for years but came to light when his paternal African ancestry was revealed to him. These pieces speak to Squirewell’s battle with the omnipresent slavery narrative. Through his art practice and his position in academia, Squirewell is in search of a more authentic history and a more empowering narrative for black identity.
The Tes-to-es-tro series (from which the most recent work evolved) came alive during his summer residency at Rush Arts Gallery in 2015. Hurricane and Trans-Atlantic are two very painterly wall sculptures from the Testoestro series, which attempts to marry dichotomies and reveal a common thread that exists in things that seem to be different. Here, Squirewell divulges his fascination with binaries. He constructs them in a manner that finds a balance between masculinity and femininity, technology and organics, geometry and nothingness. With the use of found objects, tubing, and wood he creates pieces, which appear to be abstract at first glance but contain specific visual references. With these works, the artist manages to find acceptance of difference while at the same time pointing out and challenging our preoccupation with it. These pieces venture outside of the artistic norm and delve into a spiritual realm making them powerfully thought provoking and also meditative.
Stan Squirewell is a Harlem transplant from Washington DC where he began his artistic training at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in 1993. Since graduating he has continued his tutelage under many of DC’s legends including artists Michael Platt and Lou Stovall. He is a painter, photographer, installation and performance artist. His work is multilayered and his subject matter, in gist, tackles themes such as race and memory through mythology, sacred geometry and science. He draws his inspiration from theory books, science fiction movies and novels, avant-garde jazz and indigenous storytelling. He is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art and the Hoffberger School of Painting where he studied with the late, Grace Hartigan. Mr. Squirewell is the first winner of the Rush Philanthropic and Bombay Sapphire Artisan series. He has performed with Nick Cave (SoundSuits) at the National Portrait Gallery and Jefferson Pinder with G-Fine Arts. He is privately and publicly collected. His works are in the Reginald Lewis Museum, the Robert Steele Collection and recently acquired by the Smithsonian for the African American Museum (2015.)
About Art in FLUX:
Art In FLUX creates opportunities for artists by reclaiming underutilized and unique spaces for art exhibitions and creative collaborations. Since its launch in 2012 as an uptown arts initiative, Art in FLUX has popped up in vacant neighborhood retail spaces, parks, lobbies, and street corners. By merging artistic, commercial, and community interests, FLUX supports greater accessibility to the arts, creates opportunities for uptown artists, connects art patrons with emerging artists, and promotes diversity and inclusivity in the arts. In May 2015, Art in FLUX expanded its scope and mission to include the FLUX Art Fair, an annual contemporary art fair that presents both local and international artists in Upper Manhattan during one of the City’s leading international art weeks.
The 163 Malcolm X Blvd gallery space is sponsored by Harlem Properties.
About Harlem Properties:
Harlem Properties is a boutique real estate brokerage led by President John McGuinness, a Harlem resident with an affinity for the architectural history of the neighborhood. The firm’s first storefront location opened in 2016 at 163 Lenox Avenue features a permanent art gallery curated by Art In FLUX. Harlem Properties specializing in investment sales, residential sales, and commercial leasing in Harlem as well as property acquisitions throughout greater New York City.
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Stan Squirewell, The Alchemist
Sept. 14, 6-9pm
Art In FLUX
163 Malcolm X Blvd between 118 & 119th Streets, NYC
Sept. 14 - Nov. 9, 2016,
Mon-Fri 10am-6pm and by appointment
Image Above: The Alchemist Revisited
Image Below: Hurricane, from the Testoestro series