Chris Bogia and Jesse Harrod
Grizzly Grizzly is excited to announce Two Spiders, our May exhibition, featuring sculptures and drawings from Queens based artist Chris Bogia and Philadelphia artist Jesse Harrod. Both artists use non-art materials and their specific arrangements to speak about craft verses art and to forefront the gendered language of materials and their own personal concepts of queer identity.
In his large-scale sculpture, The Decorator, Chris Bogia transforms a flat composition of simple shapes into a carefully balanced arrangement of three-dimensional objects. As if suggesting an internal process of creation, two skeletal hands, linked by strand of pearls, actively engage in the aesthetic decision making process of designing the sculpture. Occupying a space somewhere between fine art and decorative home furnishings, a space Bogia describes as being “a place where a queering can take place,” his work explores the concept of queerness as it can mean both strange and gay.
In Jesse Harrod’s sculptures, paracord rope is used as a dimensional drawing tool, woven across structural frames in a way that is simultaneously restraining and supporting. Within the frames, rope is twisted into web-like barriers, such as screens and fences, interrupted by organically knotted and layered membranes, openings, and appendages. Harrod’s macramé technique creates forms that oscillate between surface and volume, which they describe as animating the sensual qualities of material, while exploring the intersections among queer kinship, support, and sexuality.
Chris Bogia was born in Wilmington, Delaware. He received his BFA at New York University and MFA from Yale University, and currently lives and works in Queens, NY. Bogia is the Director and co-founder of Fire Island Artist Residency (FIAR), the first LGBTQ artist residency in the world, located in Cherry Grove, on Fire Island, NY, as well as an instructor of sculpture at New York University. Bogia is the recipient of a 2018 Queens Council for the Arts grant, the 2017 Rema Hort Mann Foundation’s Artist Community Engagement Grant, the 2015 Tiffany Foundation Grant, and is a current artist-in-resident at the Queens Museum Studio Program 2016-2018. Recent exhibitions include shows at the Queens Museum; CF Hill Gallery, Stockholm; Kate Werble Gallery, NewYork; Ortega y’ Gasset Projects in Brooklyn and a solo presentation at Spring Break Art Show.
Jesse Harrod has an MFA in Fibers & Material Studies from the School of The Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University. Currently, Harrod is the Head of Fibers & Material Studies at Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. Harrod’s solo exhibitions include "Low Ropes Course" at NurtureArt in Brooklyn, "Toxic Shock and Hotdog" at Vox Populi in Philadelphia, and "Soft Hardware" at the Arlington Arts Center in Arlington, VA. Their work has been exhibited in numerous group exhibitions throughout the United States. These include “In Practice: Material Deviance” at the SculptureCenter in New York, the traveling exhibition "Queer Threads: Crafting Identity and Community," and "Towards Textiles, Material Fix" at the John Michael Kohler Art Center in Sheboygan, WI. Harrod has been awarded residencies at The MacDowell Artist Colony, The Fire Island Artist's Residency, Open Studio Residency at Haystack Mountain School of Craft, the Icelandic Textile Center, and the Vermont Studio Center, among others. Harrod’s work appears in two recently published edited collections: a book-length catalog to accompany the exhibition "Queer Threads" and an edited book published by Publication Studio: Hudson that situates their artistic practice within a larger historical and contemporary context, with contributions from Jenni Sorkin, Daniel Orendorff, Allyson Mitchell, Laurel Sparx, Anthony Romero and JD Samson.