Scenic Route

May 4 – June 15, 2019
Gallery One

Exhibition Text


ANDREW RAFACZ is pleased to announce Scenic Route, a two-person exhibition of works by Lesley Jackson & Amber Renaye in Gallery One.

Chicago, IL, May 4, 2019– ANDREW RAFACZ continues the 2019 spring season with Scenic Route, a two-person exhibition of new and recent works by Chicago-based artist Lesley Jackson and New York-based artist Amber Renaye. The exhibition continues through Saturday, June 15, 2019.

Scenic Route presents the work of two artists who are connected by a shared interest in the aesthetic and conceptual possibilities of the natural world, each capturing their own language through a unique sense of materiality, resulting in decidedly contemporary presentations.

Lesley Jackson presents new and recent sculptural works, installed on the wall as well as free- standing. Combining fabricated forms with objects, both human-made and found in the natural world, Jackson’s sculptures simultaneously evoke a sense of practical function and a talisman-like relationship to the metaphysical, stirring psychological connections to everyday objects. Referencing modern architecture, classical forms and the history of decorative arts, her constructions formalize our dangerously casual connection to the material world in hopes of reconciling the broken relationship between our stuff, ourselves, and our planet.

Amber Renaye’s practice is rooted in geographically informed paintings made from terrestrial materials – earth mixed with oils, and wax to create the paint she applies to her canvases. The selection and handling of such materials is derived from a personal philosophy to work with an utmost economy of means, to draw much from little. The paintings are self-possessed, grounded in the reinterpretation of the matter they are made of, existing as onomatopoeias in which the physical and conceptual content is compounded. Aligning her painterly content with forms connected to the visual terrain of the natural world, her final works – dazzling compositions of rocks and strata, minimal washes of earthly color – are indebted to the formations of her surroundings. Renaye also presents a sculptural work that, like the combines found in Jackson’s practice, merge the earthly colors and inherent glint of a found stone with brass arms of a candelabra, an object of human-made light.

Both Jackson and Renaye distill their intuitive relationship with the natural world into a unique aesthetic that sits at the forefront of their respective practices, creating paintings and sculptures with deeper ontological implications and beguiling beauty.

LESLEY JACKSON (American, b. 1990) lives and works in Chicago, IL. She received her BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2013. Recent exhibitions include Greenlease Gallery (Kansas City, MO), Hotel Art Pavilion (New York, NY), Bar4000 (Chicago, IL), Efrain Lopez Gallery (Chicago, IL), Chicago Artist Coalition (Chicago, IL), Forth Ward Project Space (Chicago, IL), Heaven Gallery (Chicago, IL), and NADA Art Fair with Hotel Art Pavilion (2018) and SPF15 (2016). This is her first exhibition with the gallery.

AMBER RENAYE (American, b. 1986) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received a BFA from the University of North Texas (Denton, TX) in 2008. Recent exhibitions include Mother Gallery (Beacon, NY), Andrew Rafacz Gallery (Chicago, IL), Circuit 12 Contemporary (Dallas, TX), Crystal Flowers (New York, NY), Left Field (San Luis Obispo, CA), and Johannes Vogt (New York, NY). This is her second exhibition with the gallery.