“Chroma Machine Suite: Forecasting Fault Lines in the Cosmos,” a dynamic, multi-media exhibition by New York abstractionist Dannielle Tegeder at the H&R Block Artspace, showcases two site-specific works. One is a large-scale wall drawing; the other is an evolving, multi-media sculptural installation. The artist created in both in collaboration with 13 Kansas City Art Institute students during her four-day residency at the space in January.
In addition to the two installations, the exhibit includes several of Tegeder’s paintings, as well as a recent animation project in which she collaborated with a composer on an original musical score.
Tegeder has breathed energy and life into both site-specific projects, creating visual dances of line, form, and color that pulsate with movement, engaging both the spirit and emotion of the viewer.
Throughout her work, Tegeder draws from the colorful, mechanical drawings she observed as a child growing up in a family of steam fitters. She integrates this mathematical and architectural information in the creation of a personal cosmos populated geometric shapes in electrifying colors.
“As with other abstract artists, Dannielle has developed her own language from which she continually extracts over time, telling stories built on that language,” says gallery director, Raechell Smith. “
In the wall drawing, which soars through 22 feet of natural light, Tegeder refers to a rising line of vivid squares as an “escape route.” A translucent, two-dimensional collage of oblique triangles is a “healing chrysalis.”
Woven through her radiant cosmos, Tegeder’s symbols and objects of hope, freedom, and healing ascend into infinity, leaving the sharp, precarious fault lines behind.
In the sculptural installation she created with students, Tegeder took her powerful chroma and recurrent geometrical elements out of the two-dimensional space and turned them into a spatial experience. The installation is a “painting” which has come off the canvas and away from the frame.
“The installation’s geometric forms are part of a canvas but not a traditional canvas. The walls, along with the architecture and design of the space, have become her canvas,” Smith notes.
Designed with interconnected systems of stacked components, the sculptural installation reiterates Tegeder’s narrative keynotes of strength, hope, and healing that continually supersede the fault lines in her cosmos.
Varying dramatically in scale, the sculpture’s vibrant elements draw from a wide spectrum of materials, including Plexiglas, marble slabs, brass and copper sheeting, MDF, and structural steel.
Throughout her artistic journey, Tegeder has maintained an interest in salvaging and repurposing materials, and all materials for the sculptural installation were sourced in Kansas City. During her four-day residency, the students also participated in this sourcing process.
Raegan Koepsel, a ceramics/art history major, was one of the 13 students who worked with Tegeder on the projects.
“Dannielle’s systems move and overlap, whether in her two- or three-dimensional work. Her approach with people is the same. For her, everyone is interconnected.” Koepsel says.
While Tegeder has opened those doors that connect us and create community, unknowns linger in her cosmos. It is these unknowns that she asks us to discover and illuminate for ourselves.
In upcoming weeks, other artists will come in and reactivate the sculptural installation by placing the individual elements, which Tegeder calls “props,” in new compositions.
“Chroma Machine Suite: Forecasting Fault Lines in the Cosmos,” continues at the H&R Block Artspace at the Kansas City Art Institute, 16 E. 43rd St., through March 16, with several events scheduled through the closing. Hours are noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Closed Sunday and Monday. For more information 816.561.5563 or www.info.kcai.edu/artspace
Thursday, March 15, 7:00 pm in Epperson Auditorium, Vanderslice Hall at the Kansas City Art Institute, Dannielle Tegeder will speak about her cross-disciplinary exhibition, Chroma Machine Suite: Forecasting Fault Lines in the Cosmos on view at the Artspace through Friday, March 16. In an ongoing exploration of invisible systems, the artist reveals her deep engagement with ideas of architecture, urban planning, painting and collaboration in a dynamic environment that merges drawing, sculpture, animation, and sound.
Closing Reception: Friday, March 16, 6-8 pm.