*Featured photo: Left – Allan Rosenbaum, Whack. Right – Regina Jestrow, Americana Quilt 53, detail
201 E Davie St. Raleigh NC
Until 12 February 2023
Artists Regina Jestrow and Allan Rosenbaum have rich art practices that are rooted in a space of fine craft and art, where material and technique are celebrated and the artists’ labor is embodied in the finished works. Both artists incorporate textiles, using distinctive processes to piece together fabric in a coalescence of fragmented parts to realize their finished forms. The meticulous practice of each artist is overt and offers an opportunity for viewers to reflect on the material world around us.
Allan Rosenbaum’s biomorphic sculptures begin with a process of carving foam into abstract organic shapes whose bulbous curves evoke bodily forms. The foam serves as a skeletal foundation for an embellished skin of resin clay, paint, and fabric. For Rosenbaum, “a central issue in the work is the negotiation of the boundary between exterior and interior.” What is covered by texture and ornament remains integral to our perception of the finished work. The formality of hanging the sculptures on the wall creates a reverential relationship between viewer and object. This is heightened by the inclusion of gilded elements, color, and rich pattern. These sculptures carry an air of importance and history allowing narrative to enter into the realm of abstraction.
Regina Jestrow’s irregular textile forms from her Americana Quilt series create a similar experience, in which the conversation between tradition, abstraction, and labor tell a story of innovation, resistance, and history. The series began as a response to the Black Lives Matter movement and the artist’s research into quilt making as a form of protest and tool for survival, particularly during the Civil War era. Jestrow “manipulates historical quilt patterns by applying improvisation, creating a free-flowing movement with their geometry.” Like those historic quiltmakers, color and pattern are encoded with particular meaning. Jestrow’s palette of rich browns and pinks references the endless array of skin tones found in our culture, as well as the landscape of southern Florida where she lives.
The works in this exhibition invite viewers to pause and consider the making of a thing. In taking a moment to understand the piecing together of each of these parts, we are allowed an intimate glimpse at these artists’ unique voices, and an appreciation for the creative potential in all of us.
Regina Durante Jestrow is a New York-born, Miami-based visual artist, of Italian American heritage. Her mother taught her how to sew when she was a child, and she has utilized these skills throughout her practice. Jestrow’s artwork explores her ongoing interests in women’s history and American quilt pattern traditions. She has exhibited nationally and participated in various residencies and lectures throughout the country. Her work is included in the collection of the Miami International Airport MIA Galleries, and Atlantech Tower, The Related Group, Miami, FL
Allan Rosenbaum is a studio artist and former Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. Rosenbaum is a Fellow of the Virginia Center for Creative Art. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and is represented in public collections including the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Taipei Yingge Ceramics Museum, Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts, the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Macon, GA, the Montgomery Museum of Fine Art, and the City of Richmond Public Art Commission, among many others.