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Issue Date: September 2009


Experimental Art


Jennifer Keirn
We wish we could tell you what you’ll see when you visit the SPACELab exhibition beginning Sept. 11 at SPACES Gallery, but, well, unpredictability is exactly what SPACELab is all about. The experimental art laboratory, currently in its 15th year, will unveil a new, more intensive format that admits only local artists who have been working to produce new concept-driven pieces.

The results will be a significant departure from their previous work. Setting aside familiar techniques, materials and ideas, the artists are encouraged to “push and pull a concept until it materializes,” says SPACELab manager Susan Vincent. Only the artists themselves know quite how the experiment will turn out, and you’ll just have to visit SPACES Gallery to find out.

Robin Latkovich: Nov. 20–Jan. 15

“There is a part of me that would be happy painting pretty little landscapes all day,” says Latkovich, although “pretty” seems hardly the right descriptor for his past work.

Dark-hued Rust Belt landscapes, unnameable “things” (his word) floating over dry, cracked earth — Latkovich’s oil paintings depict a world that is at once overwhelming and faltering.

The Cleveland Heights-based Latkovich says his SPACELab contribution will likely escape from the canvas in an approach that will be immersive for the audience.

“You have to allow yourself to be swallowed up,” he says. “I don’t think there will be any discreet canvases hanging on the wall.”
Elizabeth Emery: Nov. 20–Jan. 15

A former professional bicyclist, Emery pours her energy into mixed-media sculpture that reflects her love of color and texture but has seldom been concept-driven.

“It’s difficult to break away to do something different when you’re getting ready for shows and have to have objects,” she says. “[SPACELab] is a great way to essentially force myself to do something new.”

Cleveland Heights-based Emery, who works by day as marketing coordinator for Art House, predicts SPACELab will have her creating art that is more participatory in nature.

“I hope this becomes a new way of working for me,” she says.
Elaine Hullihen: Sept. 11–Oct. 23

SPACELab will be the first Cleveland-area exhibition for Hullihen, who graduated from Kent State University in 2007 and still lives, works and shows regularly in Kent.

“[In a typical exhibition], you’re thinking of product, having something to show, and you get that nervousness rather than relaxing and enjoying the process and experimenting,” she says. “With this, it’s OK to show process a little more than finished pieces.”

From her training in sculpture, theater and scenic painting, Hullihen has broadened her work into installations and performance art.

“I take personal experiences ... and try to comment on the joy of it,” she says. “[In SPACELab], I want to instill in an object this feeling I’m looking for.
Mark Moskovitz: Sept. 11–Oct. 23

There are few well-worn habits here — the work of this Cleveland Heights-based artist and designer has followed where his questions about life lead him, without barriers of medium or commercial acceptance stopping him.

“My work has to do with things I have questions about, our culture and how we function,” says Moskovitz. “I have to manifest that into an object or an installation that best suits the question.”

His work has ranged from sculpture and digital art to installations and public art —he’s currently a consulting artist on the Market Square Park redesign — and he’s an adjunct CIA instructor.

“There’s still endless turf I haven’t explored,” he says.

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