08 May - 06 June 2014
Commune.1 is pleased to announce two upcoming solo exhibitions jointly titled Traces, by South African born sculptor Ledelle Moe and Baltimore-based Miranda Pfeiffer.
Moe’s monumental cement and steel sculptures situate the viewer in a preternatural relationship to her subjects due to scale and by shifting the conventional axis of the form. In this way her work provokes ontological and phenomenological questions about human relationships to nature, to the spaces we occupy and the markers/monuments/memorials we leave behind. Moe’s central installation, featuring two sizeable recumbent birds, recalls the mythology of the sunbird and the ancient form of the sarcophagus thus resonating with contrasting motifs found in nature such as birth and death, light and dark, the solid and the ephemeral.
Miranda Pfeiffer’s large-scale drawings, rendered in painstaking detail with the fine tip of a mechanical pencil, capture moments and locations with dramatic implication. The narratives she evokes are not easily located in a specific time or a familiar setting, instead portraying a fictitious land in limbo. They extend the boundaries of the known and the possible: When did rocks migrate, charge and battle for territorial dominance like animals? Under what gravitational conditions could they rise to challenge, migrate or settle down?
Form, scale and material are, in a positivist sense, indications of the conditions and limits of nature and human existence: what things can look like, the size to which they can grow, how they move and how they rest. Both artists ask us to consider a different set of rules, allowing imagination and mythology to intervene.
Ledelle Moe (b.1971, Durban) studied sculpture at Natal Technikon graduating in 1993. Active in the local art community, Moe was one of the founding members of the FLATGallery, an artist initiative and alternative space in Durban. A travel grant in 1994 took her to the United States where she embarked on a period of study at the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Sculpture Department Master’s program. Moe completed her Master’s Degree there in 1996 and soon after accepted an adjunct position in the Sculpture Department at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore, Maryland. Later she taught at the Corcoran College of Art in Washington, DC, Virginia Commonwealth University and St.Mary’s College of Maryland.
Moe has exhibited in a number of venues including the Kulturhuset (Stockholm, Sweden) the NSA Gallery (Durban, South Africa), the International Sculpture Center (Washington,DC), The Washington Project for the Arts (Washington, DC) and American Academy of Arts and Letters, NY. Projects include large-scale concrete installations at Socrates Park and Pratt Institute in New York City, and Decatur Blue in Washington, DC. In 2002 Moe was the recipient of a Joan Mitchell Award and in 2008 the Kreeger Museum Artist Award. Recent projects include installations in Salzburg, Austria, Brooklyn, NY, BostonMA, India and Cape Town. Presently based in Cape Town, Moe is head of sculpture at the University of Stellenbosch and continues to work on large-scale pieces.