Resort is pleased to present Aurelia, a group exhibition featuring Sophia Belkin, Gabriella Grill, Amy Stober and Sarah Tortora
Split Double Zero
, a solo installation by Pooneh Maghazehe

September 15 - October 20, 2018

The shell forms around the thing, concealing a formless matter.  It gives definition to something that exists between states, the public face of a gruesome, immobile limbo.  Shiny, purposeful, and strong; layered and calcified into an object all its own. Adjacent to the magic, the aurelia become artifacts of metamorphosis, clinging to their supports and catching the sun.

The four artists in Aurelia present work that investigates structure, support and layers as autonomous objects. Complex sculptural works combine a range of materials, processes, and references into free-standing and wall pieces that reflect a new reality of fractured content, streaming from multiple sources and sites.  Similar to global warming and pollution, these conditions seep into the makeup of matter, solidifying into a new and strange, hybridized cocoon- an outer armor, and protecting us from the impact of unforeseen forces. Hardening in the hopes of being prepared for what is yet to come...

Sophia Belkin uses fabric, dye, machine embroidery and sculptural armatures to create pieces that waiver between membrane and image.  Rippling, organic lines and tightly embroidered, amorphous shapes capture moments of implied transition - melting, spreading, growing.  Displayed loose and gravity-bound, or stretched taut like a tanned hide, these pieces conflate ornamentation and mutation, drawing from the vernacular of fashion, painting and biology.

Gabriella Grill joins fabric pieces together to create layered, bandaged forms and more sturdy, patchwork planes.  Using memory and personal narrative as vehicles for abstraction, her works become part architecture, part quilt - both sturdy and comforting.  

Amy Stober makes work that combines painting and sculpture using clothing and accessories cast from molds in hard plastic and skin-like rubber.  Reenvisioned as flat, found form, these substrates are then decorated with patterns and graphic embellishments. In their totality, the works embody diaristic narratives and poetic references to clothing as an expression of individuality and projection of identity.

Sarah Tortora’s pieces, each part of her larger series titled “Witness Mark,” reflect the protection and preservation of objects and position this impulse against the idea of manufacturing and broader production. Her larger work spans forms that are hard edged, geometric, and monolithic to more hand-formed, biomorphic, and suggestive. Nostalgia and one’s personal relationship to time is juxtaposed with the larger spectrum of geology. Objects created from layers of material, hardening under pressure and tectonic movement preserve a universal history while individually, our own history becomes an an amalgamation of collection and production on a much more intimate scale.  Tortora’s small resin pieces read as part specimen, part gazing ball, an intermingling of nostalgia and potential.       


Sophia Belkin (b. 1990, Moscow) currently lives and works in Baltimore, Maryland. She earned her BFA in drawing and printmaking from MICA in 2012. She has participated in residency programs in Vermont, Norway, Russia, and most recently the Narva Art Residency in Estonia. Recent shows include Stone Belly Dweller, a solo presentation at Wildflower Baltimore, In Styx Silt at Gern en Regalia in New York and Reflex Arc at the Front in New Orleans. Sophia is a cofounder and designer of Web Web World, a clothing line of one-of-a-kind, embroidered vintage garments. She moonlights as a freelance medical and biological illustrator.

Gabriella Grill is a multidisciplinary artist, working primarily in fibers, silicone casting, and sculpture. Grill grew up in Columbia, MD. She studied Printmaking at the Maryland Institute of Art in Baltimore, MD, and received her BFA 2015. Using lights, remnant fabrics, and discarded clothing and jewelry, Grill assembles samples of her past. Troubled by leaving memories behind, she creates spectacles to contend with the degeneration of personal objects as they become obsolete with the passage of time. Grill’s work fossilizes material and objects of her past, in a rebellion to let go.

Amy Stober (b. 1994) is an artist based in Baltimore, MD. She received her BFA in painting from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2016. Her work has been included in exhibitions at Sinkhole Project, Platform Gallery, bb (Baltimore, MD), Ortega Y Gasset Projects (Brooklyn, NY), and has had work featured in Packet Bi-Weekly along with the online publication drawinghw.net.

Sarah Tortora (b. 1988, New Haven, CT) received an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania in 2013, and served as a Lecturer of Contemporary Art at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia while in attendance. From 2016-2018, Sarah mounted solo exhibitions at NAPOLEON (Philadelphia, PA), GRIN (Providence, RI), Reynolds Fine Art (New Haven, CT), and CAS Arts Center (Livingston Manor, NY). Sarah has been an artist in residence at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and Ox-Bow School of Art, among others. She was the 2015-2016 Alice C. Cole '42 Fellow in Studio Art at Wellesley College, and currently is a yearlong artist-in-residence as the Visual Arts Coordinator at Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont.

Pooneh Maghazehe: Split Double Zero

"Twins caused anxiety for both ancient and pre-modern societies and were often explained through polarities of wonder or horror.  They became the bearers of dichotomous creation, as well as instillers of ambiguity, and the guardians of fragile humans, as if they were extra-ordinary.  Perhaps the most famous historical set of twins are Castor and Pollux, half-twin brothers of myth, immortalized in the constellation Gemini..."  (Excerpt from the press release written by Ajay Kurian for Double Zero currently on view at 17ESSEX)

Split Double Zero at Resort is an extension of Double Zero, Maghazehe’s current solo exhibition at 17ESSEX in New York City.  Together, the works present a single body of work that explores dichotomy through the simultaneous doubling and dividing of twins - both in process of making the works and in their destined placement.  

The  act of casting duplicates as a means to re-instate difference seems self defeating, inverted - a cross cancellation.  With no two things alike, but meant to be seen as pairs or as half of a whole, this inherent conflict reveals the shared edge between permanence and erasure. Not unlike the way in which they each became, the entire body of work is finally, also, split - this time physically by geography.  The singular thread that keeps these parts tethered, albeit momentarily, is that they were once one.

Pooneh Maghazehe is an artist based in Brooklyn, New York. She earned an MFA from Columbia University and MS in Interior Architecture from Pratt Institute. She has exhibited works and collaborative performances nationally and internationally, including ZKM Center for Art, Beijing 798 Biennale, DePaul University Museum, ICA Philadelphia, and ICA Portland. Exhibitions include Stepsister, Marinaro, Columbus Property Management, Hot Mud Fest with JAG Projects, and most recently, a solo show at 17 Essex in New York, NY.  This winter, Pooneh will be opening a solo show at Brennan & Griffin in New York, NY. She teaches at Maryland Institute College of Art, and is the founder of LM//PM Productions LLC.