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artscope magazine: January/February 2010
Welcome Statement: Brian Goslow, managing editor
Letters to the Editor
roundtable - Three Professionals. One Question.
cornered: a conversation with an art exhibition attendee
FEATURED ARTIST GEORGE NICK - Reflections of an impermanent world
Not Your Typical Photo Place - PHOTOPLACE GALLERY
TARO SHINODA: LUNAR REFLECTIONS
ODDLY PRETTY PAINTINGS - HANNAH COLE
TANGIBLE EXPERIENCE: BRIAN KEITH STEPHENS
Belonging and Longing - Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons: Works on Paper
FIXED CHAOS at Montserrat
SILENT CIRCLES: THE HEALING - Barbara Gagel
FEATURE - Evolution: Five Decades of Printmaking by David Driskell
FEATURE - Historic Japanese Kiri-E and Contemporary Tibetan Thangka
GOLDEN LEGACY: Original Art From 65 Years Of Golden Books
DECEIVINGLY SIMPLE - Charles Duback: Collages
EMMA AMOS: HEROES AND FOLK
GHOSTS OF THE PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE: ZUGUNRUHE
wanderlust - The (Right) Brainpower Triangle: The Finest Free Art in Somerville and Cambridge
community - THE KATE: A Little Gem With A Movie Star Name
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education - SPACE TO DISCOVER: MASSART/FAWC LOW RESIDENCY MFA
Capsule Previews
Belonging and Longing - Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons: Works on Paper
Gina Fraone

Hess Gallery
Pine Manor College
400 Heath Street
Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts


Through January 27



“Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons: Works on Paper” is an intimate exhibition at Hess Gallery that showcases the title artist’s feelings concerning identity and displacement.



Born in 1959 in the Matanzas province of Cuba, Maria Magdalena Campos- Pons, who is also of Nigerian descent, has lived as a New Englander for almost 20 years now. As an artist, she has become a significant contributor to the international dialogue concerning the African Diaspora, which is largely the result of slave trading in previous centuries.



Campos-Pons’ Polaroids, videos and installations have been featured in many prominent exhibitions both domestically and abroad. In 1998, she created a site-specific video installation for the Museum of Modern Art in New York called “Spoken Softly with Mama” (1998). In 2001, she was part of the 49th Venice Biennale. And in 2007, Campos-Pons had a mid-career retrospective titled “Everything is Separated,” which was organized by the Indianapolis Museum of Art. She currently teaches at The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and is the co-founder of GASP Arts in Brookline, which promotes the work of emerging artists.



The Hess Gallery exhibit continues Campos-Pons’ engaging dialogue of the African Diaspora. The subject of these particular works on paper addresses her experience of adapting to life in New England. Says Campos-Pons in her show statement: “I had found it rather challenging to express my understanding of the geography, topography and the feeling of the site of my adopted home; living in New England for almost 20 years leaves me with this double construction of belonging and longing.”



With her long history of experimenting in a wide variety of media, the Hess exhibition nicely displays Campos-Pons ability to blend different media on paper in a way that appears seamless and natural. “Clairvoyant of Autumn” (2009), for example, is a collage with Polaroid photo, ink, gouache, watercolor and watercolor pencil on archival paper. And, yet, the particular elements that make up the work seem incidental in the face of the emotions that resonate from the piece. It is her sense of color and composition that are far more interesting to contemplate than the tools used create the work.



Also transfixing is the work “Watching From the Other Side” (2009), with its lone figure that sits at the top left corner of the work, forlornly staring out at a blue body of water. Dark strands run through the water, which could be taken as seaweed, but also resemble a tangle of


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