"...of Warp and Weft" at Davis Gallery
Using wood and cheesecloth, Caprice Pierucci and Charles Heppner's mutation of form and fiber is beautiful even as it is foreboding
Reviewed by Melany Jean, Fri., July 13, 2018
In their show, "...of Warp and Weft," artists Caprice Pierucci and Charles Heppner transform common materials, wood and cheesecloth, into works that beguile the viewer. Both artists seem to spring from a grid, referencing matrices that serve as foundations of creation, cellular and computational. The grids are warped, rendered illegible, or make legibility beside the point. The weave of the cheesecloth defies its own linear nature as it undulates and unspools. The wood, too, defies its materiality. Pierucci's smoothing of 2x4's and plywood into infinite and self-immolating loops brings to the forefront only the fact of the form's interconnectedness and unknowability. A tug on any one of the fibers will disrupt the entire fabric in an instant, and any attempt to trace the loop is futile.
From the gallery window, birch plywood cascade X faces the street. A striking example of Pierucci's technique, the sculpture emanates from the wall, where the light wood tangles into itself from a pulsing center eruption, tapering off at the edges. Seen from a side angle, the design of the piece complicates as rings appear along the edges of waves rising from the wall. The sculpture looks at once like bone, bleached out, structural and protective, and muscle, striated and flexing into motion.
Opposite it, Heppner's gentle breeze captures bone-white threads in a visible weave surging over themselves in organic peels against a black background. No line is truly straight and the web seems to pitch itself around some unseen other force. His stark inkjet prints of scanned cheesecloth render in black and white the documentation of a different kind of sculpture. Where Pierucci's wooden sculptures evoke a divine solidity, Heppner's loose weaves seem precarious, tempting unraveling. Both are minimalist and abstract but intricate and organic.
Heppner's works often seem to emanate from or disappear into a vortex, whereas Pierucci's sculptures seem to pulse in waves, but their rhythms and forms are complementary, and not surprisingly. Pierucci draws from a familiarity of fiber art, coming from a background of working with fiber and paper. Her mother was also a fiber artist, and Pierucci considers her an inspiration as she seeks to reveal through her work "huge expanses of time that lead to one particular moment of beauty."
Webs of form seem to permeate and vibrate across the space from work to work. Heppner's sound is a fluid unspooling that seems constructive in the midst of its degeneration. Wisps of gleaming white fibers work their way across the panel like animated hairs spurred into action. In the bottom left, a nest is perhaps being unraveled or perhaps being created. One of Pierucci's pine works, charcoal hanging vessel, hangs in the corner nearby, casting shadows on both walls of a languid, long tubular mesh. Throughout the gallery, the adventitious mutation of form and fiber is beautiful even as it is foreboding, teeming with carcinogenic potential.
"...of Warp and Weft: Works by Caprice Pierucci and Charles Heppner"Davis Gallery, 837 W. 12th
Through July 21