Exhibition Text


ANDREW RAFACZ is pleased to announce Bowling Alone, a group exhibition of new sculpture, painting, collage, photography, and video.

Chicago, IL, June 30, 2012 – Andrew Rafacz continues the 2012 season with Bowling Alone, featuring the work of BRANDON ANSCHULTZ, DANIEL BAIRD, BENJAMIN FUNKE, SARAH MOSK, EILEEN MUELLER, AAY PRESTON-MYINT, and MIN SONG in Gallery One. The exhibition continues through August 11, 2012.

The exhibition unabashedly draws inspiration from Robert Putnam’s book Bowling Alone, in which the author, after twenty-five years of data and research, warns that our culture’s decline in social capital is negatively affecting nearly all aspects of our lives and communities. More Americans are bowling than ever before, but despite the obvious potential in this activity for social interaction, there has been a dramatic increase in it as a solitary activity. Americans are literally, more than ever, bowling alone.

In a country and historical moment where individualism is an ideological constant, the artists in this exhibition, in their own ways, create work that either directly or indirectly addresses this decline in social capital. By refusing the notion of the singular creator obsessed with personal moments or idiosyncrasies, the works speak to actual physical space, cooperative practices, and take inspiration from a collective history.

Working with the ideas and histories inherent in specific objects, Daniel Baird presents a sculpture that simultaneously engages and repels the viewer. Aay Preston-Myint, influenced by both personal identity and community, exhibits a participatory sculpture that addresses the ideal of utopia. Min Song rearranges easily-sourced, low-grade domestic building materials, synthesizing them in something unfamiliar. Engaging issues of culture and art history, Brandon Anschultz creates work that blurs the line between painting and sculpture, while Sarah Mosk creates collaged spaces, taken from a collected history of images, that are at once both familiar and completely unique. Eileen Mueller’s photographs speak to and poeticize the history of communal educational spaces and the mythology surrounding the artist. Benjamin Funke utilizes the music of the heavy metal band Metallica and the platform of YouTube to illustrate our desire to share individual experiences with an electronic community.

Bowling Alone is curated by Jessica Taylor Caponigro. Special thanks to Kathy Cho for her assistance and support.

BRANDON ANSCHULTZ (American, b. 1972) lives and works in St. Louis. He received is B.F.A. from Louisiana Tech University in 1997 and his M.F.A. from Washington University in St. Louis in 2002. Past solo exhibitions include Pacer at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, curated by Dominic Molon; Stick Around for Joy at Laumeier Sculpture Park, St. Louis and Longue Vue House and Garden, New Orleans; and Round at White Flag Projects, St. Louis. Additional group exhibitions include Die Erklarte Ausstellung, Kunstlerhaus Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria; Jasmine, Plus B, Front Desk Apparatus, New York City; Amass at Monte Vista Projects, Los Angeles and Boots Contemporary Art Space, St. Louis. He will be included in the upcoming exhibition All Good Things Become Wild and Free, curated by Daniel Orendorff at Carthage College.

DANIEL G. BAIRD (American, b. 1984) lives and works in Chicago. He received his B.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2007 and his M.F.A. from U.I.C. in 2011. Recent exhibitions include Merge Visible at Prairie Productions, Chicago; Downcast Eyes at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Speak Forward at Harold Washington College. In November of 2011 he collaborated on the exhibition Has the World already been made? with Haseeb Ahmed at the Jan van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, Netherlands. He will have a solo exhibition in September at Appendix Project Space in Portland. Newcity recently listed him as one of Chicago’s leading artists in the annual publication ‘Breakout Artists: Chicago’s next generation of image makers.’

BENJAMIN FUNKE (British, b. 1980) is an image and audio producer living in Indiana. He received his B.F.A. from Columbia College, Chicago in 2005 and his M.F.A. from the University of Notre Dame in 2012. Past exhibitions include ISLANDS IN THE STREAM at Johalla Projects in Chicago; Transient at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; Ethnographic Terminalia at the Eastern Bloc for New Media, Montreal, Quebec; Imaginary at the Simutan Association, Timisoara, Romania; New Prints at the International Print Center, New York City, New York.

SARAH MOSK (American, b. 1978) lives and works in Chicago. She received her B.F.A. from Northern Illinois University in 2000. Recent group exhibitions include The Power of Selection 3 at Western Exhibitions, Chicago; Rebus at Ben Russell Gallery, Chicago, Paper Chasers at Nuda Shank, Baltimore; Midway Art Fair at Iron St. Studios, Chicago. She will be included in forthcoming edition of IDN magazine (Hong Kong) as part of their DVD collage animation compilation.

EILEEN MUELLER (American, b. 1985) lives and works in Chicago. She studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art and later received her B.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2011. Exhibitions include Soft Ground at Roots & Culture, Chicago; Ceaseless Blooms in Jobless Colors at Johalla Projects, Chicago; and the upcoming Queering Spaces at Sullivan Galleries, Chicago. She is the recipient of the Fred Endsley Memorial Fellowship and the World Less Travelled Grant as well as a finalist for the Gelman Travel Fellowship.

AAY PRESTON-MYINT (American, b. 1981) is an artist, educator, printmaker and DJ based in Chicago. He received a B.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2006 and an M.F.A. from U.I.C. in 2011, when he was also awarded the 2011 Joan Mitchell M.F.A. Grant. Solo exhibitions include I’m Here To Make Friends, Happy Collaborationists, Chicago. Recent group exhibitions include Group Hug at Co-Prosperity Sphere, Chicago; Suggestions of a Life Being Lived at SF Camerawork, San Francisco, CA; Lifestyle Plus Form Bundle at Madame, Minneapolis, MN; and Multiplemix at Devening Projects, Chicago. Upcoming group exhibitions include All Good Things Become Wild and Free at the HF Johnson Gallery at Carthage College and Epic Something at Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago. Aay also works with other artists as a collaborator under the names No Coast, Chances Dances, and Monsters and Dust.

MIN SONG (American, b. 1982) lives and works in Chicago, Illinois. She received her M.F.A. from U.I.C. in 2011. Recent group and solo exhibitions include Chris Naka and Min Song at Julius Caesar, Chicago; Small Scale Lifestyles at Seerveld Gallery, Palos Heights; Small Scale Lifestyles II at Happy Collaborationist, Chicago; Min Song at Michael Jon, Miami.