Cerritos College Art Gallery


SECOND SIGHT: New Work by Christina McPhee

September 8, 2016 - November 12, 2016
Opening: Thursday, September 8, 2016 @ 6PM-9PM
Artist Talk: Monday, September 19, 2016 @ 6:30-8PM
Closing & Book Release: Saturday, November 12, 2016 @ 4-8PM
In addition to the exhibition catalog for SECOND SIGHT, the closing reception will debut the newly published text Christina McPhee: A Commonplace Book, published by Punctum Books and edited by Eileen A. Joy, with contributions by Judith Rodenbeck, Ina Blom, Phil King, Frazer Ward, Melissa Potter and others.

Cerritos College Art Gallery is pleased to present SECOND SIGHT, a solo exhibition of recent work by the conceptual painter and new media artist Christina McPhee. This groundbreaking presentation assembles a significant number of McPhee's new large-scale abstract paintings, several of her smaller gestural drawings, selections from her ongoing photographic Double Blind Studies series, and a new single-channel video collage, Microswarm Patchwalk. Christina McPhee's SECOND SIGHT dilates with the scorch of excess, after-image, ghosting effects, and transversal overwrites. She creates fluid, intricate line systems that mesh and contract in bravura-comical allusions to anime, graffiti, and the lost art of handwriting.

McPhee's paintings are constructed using a laborious ink-over-oil process, whereby drawing, typically thought of as the primal underlayment, becomes the topmost layer, like an illumination, over painted and incised surfaces. Each work pulls from and combines multiple codes---variously excavating the entomological futures of classical Mayan grammar, dipping into an alphabet soup of deep-sea taxonomies in the post-oil spill Gulf of Mexico, and setting to war the chemical transcriptions of synthetic estrogen and commercial weed-killer. Her performative engagement with drawing vibrantly animates a dense montage, colliding semi-legible transcriptions of fragile ecologies and seismic landscapes with seductive, surface-skidding calligraphic gestures and mark-making. Her lines throw down rope-like bridges, a cat's-cradle network of convergent signifiers: cached and clustered, the fragments take exception to their systems. In her new video, Microswarm Patchwalk, she transcribes a beach walk wearing a post-surgical eye patch. The video is cut to a new recording of performance by Quinn Dougherty, of her recent drawn score for electronic guitar and computer, Microswarm One.The lush photographs from her Double Blind Studies series consist of Rorschach-like gelatin silver prints made from images of her own recent drawings, which she combines, dissects and butterflies into ambiguous arrays that call into question perception and the creative act itself.

Christina McPhee's work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Rhizome's Artbase at the New Museum, the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, the Storefront for Art and Architecture, Thresholds New Media Collection in Scotland, and elsewhere. Solo exhibitions include the American University Museum in Washington, D.C., Cara y Cabezas Contemporary in Kansas City, Jessica Silverman Gallery in San Francisco, and Bildmuseet in Umea, Sweden. She has participated in numerous group exhibitions, notably at Documenta 12, Bucharest Biennial 3, the Museum of Modern Art in Medellin, Columbia, Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive, UCR/California Museum of Photography, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in London. A native of Los Angeles County, McPhee served as the Langlois Alumnae-in-Residence at Scripps College (Claremont, 2000). She is additionally a graduate of both the Kansas City Art Institute and the Boston University School for the Arts, where she studied with renowned painter Philip Guston.

For more on Christina McPhee, visit her website: http://www.christinamcphee.net/