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Artist in Residence

Juan Angel Chávez
New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art
March/April 2012

New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art presents a site-specific installation by Chicago-based artist, Juan Angel Chávez, from April 14-May 27. The artist’s residency commences on March 17 at 4 p.m. with a ritual burning of a 19th century barn that has recently been destroyed by fierce winds. Residual materials will be used in the exhibition.  Installation of the artwork will take place through the months of March and April.  A lecture by the artist will be held on campus at the University of Southern Indiana on March 15th at 6:30 p.m.  An opening reception for the artist will take place on Saturday, April 14 from 4-7 p.m. at the New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art. 

Immersing himself in process and materials, Juan Angel Chávez creates thoughtful, and often fantastic environments; what the artist calls 3-d collage. Usually from discarded construction materials found in urban areas, remnants of buildings, disposed of street signs, and used construction cones become the materials of choice. In "Scraping the Bowl", Chávez's newest installation in New Harmony, the artist will transform the New Harmony Gallery into a lunar-like wasteland using found objects that will be manipulated by extreme ritualistic methods, including fire and the buzz of a chainsaw.  Rendered in the chaos of these remnants will exist the rustic nostalgia of an all but forgotten way of life.

Born in La Junta, Mexico, Chávez immigrated with his family to Chicago when he was thirteen. In Chicago, he studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and later became immersed in the underground art, music and skateboarding worlds. By producing a variety of murals and mosaics around Chicago, and working at the National Museum of Mexican Art, he became well known in the Chicago art scene. He has had solo exhibitions in Elmhurst and Chicago, Illinois and in Boston, Massachusetts. Additionally, he has been recognized with the prestigious Richard H. Driehaus Individual Artist Award and the Louis Comfort Tiffany award in NY, NY, Artadia Individual artist award NY, NY and 3Arts, Chicago. Chávez currently holds a faculty position at the Art Institute of Chicago.

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Art Works.  The New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art is sponsored by the University of Southern Indiana. 

Jim Buchanan
New Harmony Gallery Artist in Residence
November 2010

Originally trained has a landscape architect, Jim Buchanan has installed over 50 different commissioned artworks throughout Europe and as far south as Argentina. The majority of Buchanan’s work focuses on the image and history of the labyrinth. Buchanan has created labyrinths out of light projections, concrete, stone, earth, plastic cuterly, sand, candles, cloth and bamboo numerous other materials. His projects include a “Light Catcher” labyrinth created out of bamboo and cloth at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in Wakefield England. A light labyrinth was created out of 800 tea lights and 3 tons of sand in Writtle College in Essex England in which a large group created a human chain and walked through the labyrinth together. “Mallum Labyrinth” an earthen labyrinth created in Eibergen in the Netherlands, in which 4,500 tons of soil were moved in order to create a labyrinth that spanned 115 feet and rose 5 feet high. This labyrinth sat on the site of an old castle of which there were no remains, and was designed to replicate the labyrinth at Knossos.

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