Making is Thinking

julia_dault_untitled_17Sculptures and paintings by Julia Dault are currently on display in Making is Thinking at the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The show seeks to reprioritize the thinking hand – or embodied knowledge – over the hegemony of the dematerialization of conceptual art. Here, craft is considered as a direct challenge to our increasing distance from the tangible, and, as a result, is defined less by a “macramé aesthetic” and more by subverting such tired distinctions, including those of “art” and “artisan”. Dault uses non-traditional materials, such as large sheets of Formica, mirrored plexiglas, and boxer’s hand wraps – to create work that is wholly anti-illusionistic: all 360 degrees of her sculptures are visible and represent the exact meeting point between the material’s inherent characteristics and her abilities to manipulate them; the paintings celebrate the materiality of paint and the immediacy of the gesture yet do not devolve into emotive mark-making, since they require the mediation of a tool – not a brush, but an industrial texturizer – for their composition. Other artists in the exhibition include Wilfrid Almendra, Eva Berendes, Alexandre da Cunha, Dewar & Gicquel, Ane Hjort Guttu, Hedwig Houben, Teppei Kaneuji, Edgar Leciejewski, Rita McBride, William J. O’Brien, Eva Rothschild, Hans Schabus, and Koki Tanaka.

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