Erin Shirreff opened her show, Arm's Length, at Sikkema Jenkins & Co, her first solo showcase at the gallery in New York. Featuring sculptural, 3-dimensional prints, and other flatworks, the exhibition is a fundamental exploration of space — both physical and conceived — between object and representation, viewer and work.
The term itself "Arm's Length" is used to name an intentional separation between one thing from another, using language of the body. This term applies to Shirreff's own study of the distance between things. Looking at the ways objects are captured, represented, and symbolized, and the crucial misalignments in-between those things, are the crux of the artist's work. Loss, imagination, and projection between multidimensional realities enforced in Shirreff's forms, assemblages, and compositions.
As a long-term client, Erin's work is familiar to us, and as always fascinating and complex. In this show she presents a new series, Relief, of 3-dimensional photographic print work, that we had a hand in producing. Photographic handmade sculptural forms (which she calls maquettes) are stitched vertically in her signature style. Scored and folded along the division line between the separate entities, the prints buckle or billow, to mimic a centerfold effect. The resulting forms hover in space over this horizon line, creating yet another dimension.
The Relief prints are presented amongst other cyanotype photogram flatworks and sculptural forms made by the artist, among a video made by Shirreff that shows abstract assemblages by Czech modernist photographer Jaroslav Rössler, reprinted and re-sequenced to play within their pictorial space.
Exhibition photographs courtesy of Sikkema Jenkins & Co. All artwork courtesy of the artist, Erin Shirreff.