A New Show in Seoul Brings Together Artistic Depictions of Chosen Family by Gina Beavers, Diedrick Brackens, and Others—See It Here

Take a sneak peek at a gallery that has just reopened to the public.

Calida Rawles, New Day Coming (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.
Calida Rawles, New Day Coming (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

As galleries around the world begin to slowly reopen, we are focusing on exhibitions at spaces that are now receiving public visitors. 

 

Next of Kin
Through July 4 at Various Small Fires

What the gallery says“Various Small Fires is pleased to present, ‘Next of Kin,’ the exhibition debut of six American artists in Seoul, South Korea. In the unsettling ups and downs of the current COVID-19 crisis, VSF has taken the opportunity this summer to focus on a universal constant: family.

Pushing beyond its biological definition, the artists capture members of their families, chosen tribes, and imagined ancestors in intimate portraits that reflect an unprecedented era of shifting priorities with an insistence on intimacy and tenderness. Essentially under house arrest, Gina Beavers, Diedrick Brackens, Jessie Homer French, Chase Hall, Cindy Ji Hye Kim, and Calida Rawles contemplate the figures at the core of their social disruption.”

Why it’s worth a look: Among the standout works in this show of gallery artists who come from diverse backgrounds are Diedrick Brackens’s woven works, in which silhouetted figures embrace, and Jessie Homer French’s painting Genesis, which depicts sea creatures that seemingly have no concerns about social distancing.

The exhibition also includes Calida Rawles, whose work was featured on the cover of Ta-Nahesi Coates’s novel, The Water Dancer. Her hyperrealistic paintings of black bodies submerged in clear blue water seem to hope for better days. On the other end of the spectrum, Chase Hall’s depiction of a seemingly carefree afternoon, featuring a carful of black men and women enjoying a day at the beach, bears the unsettling title All my brothers go to heavens—a stark reminder of the undercurrent of fear and persistent danger that black Americans face every single day.

What it looks like:

Installation view, "Next of Kins" at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Installation view, “Next of Kin” at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Diedrick Brackens, <I>nuclear lovers</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Diedrick Brackens, nuclear lovers (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Jessie Homer French, Genesis (2017) [detail]. Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Jessie Homer French, <i>Genesis</i> (2017). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Jessie Homer French, Genesis (2017). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Installation view, "Next of Kins" at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Installation view, “Next of Kin” at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Gina Beavers, <i>16 Step Smoky Eye</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Gina Beavers, 16 Step Smoky Eye (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Installation view, "Next of Kins" at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Installation view, “Next of Kin” at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Cindy Ji Hye Kim, <i>Character #18</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Cindy Ji Hye Kim, Character #18 (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Cindy Ji Hye Kim, <i>Character #18</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Cindy Ji Hye Kim, Character #18 [detail](2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Installation view, "Next of Kins" at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Installation view, “Next of Kin” at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Installation view, “Next of Kin” at Various Small Fires, Seoul.

Chase Hall, All my brothers go to heavens (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Calida Rawles, <i>New Day Coming</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.

Calida Rawles, New Day Coming (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Various Small Fires.


Follow artnet News on Facebook:


Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.

Share