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Special Projects

High Water

Kate Hampel, "Floodwall," 2016, Sandbags sewn with thread, cotton tape, & cloth inkjet-printed with image of artist's skin; rock salt
Kate Hampel, "Floodwall," 2016, Sandbags sewn with thread, cotton tape, & cloth inkjet-printed with image of artist's skin; rock salt
Sunday, February 5, 2017 to Sunday, March 12, 2017
Opening Reception: Sunday, February 5, 2017, from 2 - 5 pm

Terrain Exhibitions and the Chicago Artists Coalition are pleased to present High Water, an installation by artist Kate Hampel. High Water is the inaugural exhibition of the Terrain-HATCH Public Art Residency and is curated by Kate Pollasch.

Kate Hampel’s interdisciplinary work confronts social topics, which may be viewed as difficult or taboo, with a compelling visual intimacy and conceptual openness. Her practice engages with the aesthetics of power and violence and unravels embedded social constructs and seemingly invisible narratives.

High Water is the second in a series of ad-hoc architectural installations created as gestures of resistance. In this iteration, Hampel captures intimate photographs of different parts of her skin and expands those images into digitally printed fabric that is cut, sewn, and stuffed into sandbags. In a conventional context, sandbags are employed as a line of defense and support, a brace for impending trauma, damage, and instability from natural disaster or war and violence. In High Water, Hampel constructs a corporeal wall of resistance that imbues the domestic outdoor space with a sense of preparation, a call to arms, and contemplation of the fragility of political opposition.

About Terrain-HATCH Public Art Residency

The Terrain-HATCH Public Art Residency is a joint partnership between Terrain Exhibitions and the Chicago Artists Coalition’s HATCH Projects. Formed by their shared dedication to showing inventive work and fostering experimentation and creativity, this public art residency allows HATCH Projects graduates the opportunity to curate four exhibitions at Terrain. Shows run for a period of 5 weeks, between February and July, 2017, and are accessible and visible 24 hours a day. All exhibitions take place in the front yard of Terrain Exhibitions, located at 704 Highland Avenue in Oak Park, IL.

Adults only please for the reception.


Artist Bio

Kate Hampel holds an MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA from Concordia University in Montreal. Based in Chicago, she has participated in residencies across the United States, including the Vermont Studio Center, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, and the Ragdale Foundation, and was the recipient of the Fountainhead Fellowship in Craft/Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. Her work has been featured in the New York Times and has been shown nationally and internationally at galleries and museums including AIR Gallery in Brooklyn, NY; the Daegu Culture and Arts Center in South Korea; the Michigan Institute for Contemporary Art; and the Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art.

Curator bio

As a curator, art historian, and writer, Kate Pollasch’s practice interrogates pre-existing notions of history and normativity through queer tactics, network theory, archival studies, and considerations of affect and digital pedagogy. In 2012, she curated the exhibition “Roger Brown: This Boy’s Own Story” of Chicago Imagist artist Roger Brown, which unearthed previously censored artworks and archival materials from Brown’s career and resulted in Brown’s induction into the Visual AIDS Artist Registry. Pollasch holds a MA in Modern art History and Theory and an MA in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has held positions with The American Visionary Art Museum, The Art institute of Chicago, the Roger Brown House Museum, Sullivan Galleries, and most recently Rhona Hoffman Gallery. She has lectured at The Chicago History Museum, The Art Institute of Chicago, and The University of Chicago and is a contributing writer for New City, The Seen, and Elite Daily. Kate Pollasch was a 2015-2016 HATCH Projects Curatorial Resident with the Chicago Artists Coalition.