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Lindsay Rhyner
Efrain Lopez Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
Recommendation by Robin Dluzen

Lindsay Rhyner, "Candelabra," 2017 Hand-stitched and beaded fabric, sequins, 52 x 35"

Continuing through March 4, 2018

From the purges of closets and basements, the dregs of thrift stores and alleys, comes the material for Minneapolis-based Lindsay Rhyner’s textile works. What our American capitalist culture deems to be at the end of their useful lives — outdated, tacky, worn or simply superfluous to our wardrobes — Rhyner dyes, cuts and re-sews into masterfully finished, wall-bound quilts of representational imagery and ambiguous narratives in her exhibition, “Eye of the Needle.”

In “Candelabra,” the artist combines her hand-stitching and beading with that of the found materials’ original, anonymous makers. Here, what appears to be cut-out, appliqué doves are turned upside down to resemble wax dripping from the candlesticks of the central image. In the background, a cheesy jungle print surrounds a monochromatic football field. The contrast of the white and gold atop the dark field, and the outsized scale of the object atop the implied scale of the delineated yard lines creates dynamic, illusionistic space within the tightly sewn layers. It appears as if the candelabra is floating high above the landscape.

Rhyner’s works are a testament to the transformation of material. This is not about the manipulating of media to appear as something other than itself physically, but in the transformation of its perceived value in terms of form, use, quality and concept.

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