Sacha Ingber

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My work is about aspiration. I make objects in which I can instill the gaps and urges in my imagination, dreams, and reality. As if I were an architect, feelings of place and the body’s experience within it, is what occupies my thoughts most of the time. Drawing from pop, postmodern design, icons of the everyday, and craft traditions, my recent body of work has come about in a similar way to mosaic and collage. Resin casting and building processes allow me to indulge and explore the way in which visual languages can take on attitudes of rebellion, exuberance and humor, resulting in objects possessing their own vernacular.

I come from a family spread across continents. I grew up travelling back and forth between Brazil and the United States. My mind is full of Americana, but mixed together with a place where modern buildings nest inside of an unruly tropical landscape. These variations have crawled into my visual vocabulary.

My inspiration comes from the culture analytics and pop of the Tropicália movement, the playfulness of Roberto Burle Marx, the flamboyance of postmodern architecture and design, and the symmetry and tactility of contemporary fashion, to name a few. I am fascinated by the unique combination of rigidity, willfulness, and fantasy found in Visionary Architecture. I investigate consumption of mass produced products, pattern, and ornament, and fetishize functional domestic objects.

The ceiling pieces (“The Book is on the Table” and “Seconds”) came first in my trajectory. They were my way of resolving an imaginary space which is large and immersive enough to feel, though distant enough to be seen as an image or almost as a dream. The most engaging way for me to do this was to make them exist as fragmented tableaux installed on the ceiling of a space. I was influenced by mobiles, restaurant ceilings, portals, and chandeliers. I fixed specific geometric colored lighting inside of the works. This was one way for me to ground them in reality. It was about creating a feeling of displacement inside of a composition.

Over the past few years, I have shifted away from using architectural scale as a way of creating actual spaces that are physically present. I have been working on a smaller, arm-span-scale, focusing on making projected psychological vignettes. I have developed a way of creating a “relief painting” through casting. My process often begins with an outline of a found or invented icon, which acts like an anchor and sets the logic for a piece. I cast, build, weave, and dye elements like ceramic, silicone, plastic, fabric, rope, and wood. These live in combination with found objects, many of which can be misinterpreted for the custom made ones. Inversely, the ones I fabricate are often mistaken for readymades.

The casting involves using urethane resin as the main medium. I see this resin as the glue that physically and compositionally holds a work together. I first set a boundary for the resin by making a mold. The objects and materials embedded inside of the casts lay either just underneath the exterior transparent layer, are flush with the surface, or sit on top. At times, they appear to be making attempts to escape the frame of the work. To me, the layers inside the resin forms are like depth in a human body or a body of water.

My works illustrate doorways, staircases, lamps, foliage, car air fresheners or charcuterie boards. The absence of matter in the cutouts, for me, is as important as its presence. I am inclined to take a slightly subversive approach in the way that I employ process and material; Cardboard can act as a frame for glass, or resin as a vessel for ceramic.

I pull from images and memories, building each part of a piece separately in a nonlinear way, though I am constantly considering and reconsidering the whole. As if making an abstract painting, every piece reveals and demands its own rules as I work. Visual memory comes into play because these casts are made partially “blind”. This means that the moment of resin-casting happens with the front of the work facing down. I am excited by the slight disconnect between what is highly controlled and choreographed  before and after casting, and what is driven by sensation or predictions of what will come to be.

In my studio, ceramic is used both autonomously and also becomes embedded in the resin casts. Similar to drawing, working with clay is a way for me to make more immediate kinds of gestures and marks. The group of ceramic “houses” as part of my Vacay Penetrable series, borrows part of its name from Helio Oiticica’s neo-concrete “penetraveis” and are inspired by Isa Genzken’s “Beach Huts” series from 2000. These sculptures act as suggestions of how spaces and your body’s orientation towards them, feel. They are playful propositions for structures that can only exist in a psychological space.

 

It is important that my works contain enough material substance to feel as though they exist in a space with you. It is important to be able to feel the weight of them. In the same way that a couture dress can appear to be very heavy because of the way that the craftsmanship is so integral to its existence, I aspire for my works to have this same visual weight. I want them to beckon the desire for touch, to reveal that the complexity of the endeavor is slow, layered, and interlaced. Though my works waver between image and object, the density of them should be vivid, and thereby become present in the room with you, as if you are sitting at home or out to dinner with them.

 

Education

2013 Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, ME

2013 M.F.A. Sculpture + Extended Media, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

2009 B.A. Studio Art and Psychology, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY

 

Selected Exhibitions

2017 Timeshare, Duplex, Zaha Hadid building, Chelsea, New York, NY

2017 Monkey Riding Alligator, Hometown Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

2017 Spring Break Art Show, 4 Times Square, New York, NY

2017 Centerpiece, Bomb Pop-Up, Pete’s Candy Store, Brooklyn, NY

2017 Love Without Eyes, FAB building, Richmond, VA

2016 Slow, Dimwitted Carnage, Coustof Waxman, New York, NY

2016 Leisure, 114 Forest Street, Brooklyn, NY

2016 The Split between the Eye and the Gaze, Kunstraum, Brooklyn, NY

2014 In-dissonance, John Slade Gallery, New Haven, CT

2014 144 Rooftop, 144 Spencer Street, Brooklyn, NY

2014 Eat the Food, Not its Name, Clemente Soto Velez, New York, NY

2013 New Work, 299 Meserole St. Bushwick, Brooklyn, NY

2013 (Paradise) The Book is on the Table, Anderson Gallery, Richmond, VA

2012 Wickham House 200, Richmond History Center, Richmond, VA

2012 VOX VIII: Annual Exhibition of Emerging Artists, Vox Populi, Philadelphia, PA

2012 We Work Hard So You Don’t have To, Reynolds Factory, Richmond, VA

2011 Remnants, Traces, & High Maintenance, Hillyer Art Space, Washington, DC

2010 Kleine Kunstschätze!!!, Locker 50B, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

2010 Resident Group Show, Red Mill Gallery, Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT

2009 Catwalk in Residence: New Works by Sacha Ingber, Brik Gallery, Catskill, NY

2009 Catwalk Residency Alumni, James W. Palmer Gallery, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY

2009 Show, 3739 Academy Street, Poughkeepsie, NY

2008 Sculpture, James W. Palmer Gallery, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY

Awards & Residencies

2012 Teaching Assistantship, Sculpture I, Virginia Commonwealth University, School of  the Arts, Richmond, VA (fall semester)

2010 Summer Studio Program, Sculpture + Extended Media, VCU, Richmond, VA

2010 Vermont Studio Center, Fellowship and Artist Grant Recipient, Johnson, VT

2009 Catwalk Arts Residency, Catskill, NY

2009 Lewis Rubenstein Award for Excellence in Studio Art, Vassar College

Publications

Counting Pollen Counting Thread – Artist book , Oso Press, 2017

Maake Magazine Issue 5 – Featured Artist, 2017

Triumph Building Complex – Artist manual for Triumph School Manual Project, 2017 

Press

“‘Monkey Riding Alligator’ at Hometown, New York”, BLOUIN ARTINFO, June 13, 2017

Two Coats Selected Gallery Guide (Monkey Riding Alligator at Hometown)”, Two Coats of Paint, July 10, 2017

Roberta Libby, “VOX VIII The material unreal”, Artblog, July 22, 2012