In “JOMO: The Joy of Missing Out”, at the Evanston Art Center, Kathy Halper celebrates her anti-social life through her humorous multimedia paintings and sculptures. As Halper says, “You know, I love my friends dearly. I just hate having to see them”. Using craft materials, warped perspectives and sculptured surfaces, she explores the daily boredom of 30 years of marriage, dogs in our personal space and our addiction to screens. With honesty, affection, and tongue-in-cheek awareness, Halper invites everyone to her party of one.
To create her narrative paintings, Halper warps and forces perspectives, creating a sense of instability and chaos that somehow makes sense. She sources cardboard from Amazon orders, glitter, embroidery thread, and various clays to build up her base surface, making objects literally pop out. Objects often defy the panel’s edge, running onto the frame. The artist also embellishes bisque vases that appear to have escaped her canvases, more concerned for their challenge to her storytelling goals than functional origins.
Halper first made a name for herself a decade ago creating embroideries that explored issues of privacy using found photos of teenagers in Facebook’s nascent days. As Hyperallergic’s Alicia Eler said at the time, “Halper offers a look into a world normally closed off from adults, especially from her parents.” Halper has since increasingly turned her lens on herself, employing the same critical yet loving eye. Her new work is her most personal yet, exploring life as it happens and turning each day, no matter how uneventful, into the potential for art.
More images can be found on Kathy Halper’s website here.
JOMO: The Joy of Missing Out will be exhibited in the Main Second Floor Gallery of the Art Center. The opening reception is free and open to the public. This exhibition is partially funded by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the EAC’s general membership.
Evanston Art Center, a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization, is dedicated to fostering the appreciation and expression of the arts among diverse audiences. The Art Center offers extensive and innovative instruction in broad areas of artistic endeavor through classes, exhibitions, interactive arts activities, and community outreach initiatives.
Evanston Art Center is located at 1717 Central Street, Evanston, IL. Evanston Art Center Gallery Hours: Monday – Thursday 9am – 6pm; Friday 9am – 5pm, Saturday and Sunday 9am – 4pm. First and second floor gallery spaces are accessible. Limited free parking is available.
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