Art@Work presents Kerry Phillips

From Jun 5th through Aug 27th, 2010.


Art@Work is currently presenting the solo exhibition Congratulations, Happy Birthday and other mementos of another day by artist Kerry Phillips. Lately, Phillips has been doing a lot of writing, recounting stories, short and mostly imagined experiences. Postcards: things I meant to say to no one in particular is from a series of postcards that she found and wrote while working abroad. Quite by accident, the postcards themselves read like an unfolding story of her time away. For this show Ms. Phillips has continued to explore collecting as it pertains to communications, other people’s and her own: often simple, sometimes trite and disposable, heartfelt, complicated or even unspoken. She explains she has never been a very good corresponder and, as such, not very fond of leavings and goodbyes.

She began to try to learn to correspond in the most elementary way – proper handwriting. While in France, Kerry learned to write just as French children do. She is now determined to learn fancy calligraphy, which she will use in many future correspondences. She writes that she is just at the beginning of this endeavor and “I don’t even know what to really call it.” Both of her parents grew up on family farms in Texas. One grandmother collected things (kept things) and the other was a grand storyteller. Both influenced her greatly. She creates sculptures and installations using whatever materials are available in a given place at a given time – these range from things people throw away to collected experiences and retold stories. She often engages the public to help in the gathering of materials or uses their interaction in the completion of the work.

“My general working practice involved finding and keeping objects for their potential. I’ve made a shift to a more immediate approach to working with materials and sites: finding, using and letting go. I’ve drastically limited my bounty of resources, forcing myself to rely heavily on insight, some good oldfangled farm know-how (thanks Dad) and my MacGyver-like resourcefulness. This new approach has challenged me in every way, even in how I engage the viewer, which is now more direct in both scheduled events and unscheduled mini-events – like the recent farm tour I gave in downtown Hollywood where I guided groups around the parking lot pointing out and describing bits of my father’s farm as if we were actually there; collecting phrases in French from French people in France; using masking tape to write large letters to crushes I’ve had; or by getting people to „draw a line for a bound book of 524 lines on 524 pages by 524 people.”

Kerry Phillips’ work has been featured in numerous solo and collaborative exhibitions such as: Sometimes your things are my things, a project room installation/performance at the Art & Culture Center in Hollywood, FL in 2009; Crush Letters, performed at the Last Minute Performance Festival at Kawiarnia Naukowa in Kraków, Poland in 2009; Collected while here, a performance/installation at Galerie Aqui Siam Ben in Vallauris, France in 2009; Shadows, Disappearances and Illusions at the Miami Art Museum in Miami, FL in 2008; and Vacuuming Gave Me Carpal Tunnel, a project room installation at Locust Projects in Miami, FL in 2007.

Ms. Phillips earned her BFA in 2000 from Florida International University and her MFA in 2003 from the University of Arizona. She and her dog, Tonta, are currently living and working in Miami, Florida.

1245 SW 87th Avenue
Miami, FL 33174

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