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Dan Steinhilber | Dan Steinhilber

March 15 - April 26, 2008

 

press release:

Opening Reception: March 15, 6:30 - 8:30pm

In this show, Steinhilber uses photographs, sculpture and drawings to explore themes of fluidity, death, violence and desire for control. The subjects of the show are both complex and simple. In the works, foam packing peanuts, plastic bags and fluorescent bulbs begin to share a narrative that mixes the unnatural with the organic.

Packing peanuts are designed to provide safety and protection by absorbing energy to prevent brokenness, but when uncontained they can create their own form of chaos. Steinhilber confronts this with photographs that document thousands of loose peanuts flowing fluidly, crashing like waves and continually sinking and re-surfacing. However, a new group of sculptures captures these peanuts. He casts them into forms that suggest decaying bodies, coal mounds or coral smothered in oil. The peanuts are now suffocated. Vacuum-sealed in black plastic trash bags, they appear heavy and organic, despite their synthetic nature.

In the project room, an installation that the viewer can travel through allows for experiential interpretation. The dim and flickering bulbs appear to be in their final hours or perhaps imply an afterlife. The viewer can alter the light with touch via the electricity and fluids in their body.

Steinhilber describes his drawings as "seeing plastic bags floating in the air, caught in a tree, or blowing down a city street. The drawings with torn bags suggest the failure and vulnerability of our bodies and culture, and the freezer paper suggests an act of preservation and a desire not to die."

Dan Steinhilber has exhibited work in galleries, museums, sculpture parks and non-profit spaces. Steinhilber has had solo exhibitions at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC; The Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD; The Mattress Factory, Pittsburgh, PA; and The Contemporary Art Museum, Houston, TX. He has been included in group exhibitions at the Des Moines Art Center, Iowa and the Johnson Museum of Art, Ithaca, NY among others. Steinhilber has been awarded artist grants from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and he has received a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship. Steinhilber¹s work is included in international private and public collections.

 

Gallery Hours are Thursday - Saturday, Noon - 5pm
(and by appointment)

4718 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20011
T. 202.462.1601
F. 202.462.1604