A solo exhibition of work by Kaveri Raina
April 12–May 12, 2019
Opening Reception: Friday, April 12, 6–9pm
191 Henry Street
New York, NY 10002
Gallery Hours: Wednesday–Sunday 12 pm–6 pm
Curated by Emily Burns
Assembly Room presents Linger Still, a solo show of new work by Kaveri Raina.
In her paintings, Raina depicts the sensation of navigating unfamiliar territory. Born and raised in Delhi, India, and moving to the United States at a young age, she grapples with the questions of self and reflects on her past and future through themes of displacement, in-betweenness, and unease through painting. She considers her work an extension of her parents, their upbringing, and the morals and teachings they instilled in her.
The works in this show continue Raina’s search for what it means ‘to hover’, a search which began in the summer of 2017. She questions what it feels like to linger, or float through time, and to eventually learn to embrace the inherent uncertainty. In a shift from past themes, the new works represent this recent embodiment of perpetual liminality—a conscious choice to be neither here nor there, a simultaneity of otherness. Making a sentient choice to be part of many, to experience a hybrid identity, evokes the sadness of memories seemingly lost, but also the mirage of what could have been. The consequences of these decisions become sometimes empowering, often precarious, and always clouded by ambiguity.
Highly meditative, yet vigorous color energizes the woven burlap and canvas surfaces of the paintings, creating a visual push and pull—a metaphor for the lively unease of the experience of constant relocation and reinvention. Burlap is a significant material, the rough weave of the fibers offering a surface which is already permeable, and on which paint can be applied from opposite planes. The making of the paintings themselves becomes a physical embodiment of a shifting, rotating approach to existence.
Recapturing the directness of drawing in her practice, Raina incorporates the intimacy and immediacy of graphite into works on paper, as well as larger oil paintings influenced by this re-emergence in her work. An entirely new development includes the appearance of image-based forms and figures, whose physical bodies are embedded together in the overlapping, amorphous landscapes.
Kaveri Raina lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She was born and raised in New Delhi, India and moved to the States at the age of eleven. She received her MFA in Painting and Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016 and her BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2011. Raina has received awards and fellowships including the James Nelson Raymond fellowship, Fred and Joanna Lazarus Scholarship, amongst others. She was recently nominated for the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors grant. Raina’s work has been exhibited in the US, India and Germany. She had her first international solo exhibition in March 2019 at Annarumma Gallery, Naples, Italy. Raina attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in the summer of 2017. She was a fellow at Lighthouse Works and Triangle Arts Association in New York. She is currently part of Paint School Residency, Shandaken Projects, New York.
Emily Burns is an artist and curator. She has curated group exhibitions at the Woskob Family Gallery (central PA), studio e gallery, and The Alice (Seattle). She is curating upcoming exhibitions at Unpaved Gallery (Yucca Valley, CA) Left Field Gallery (Los Osos, CA,) and Trestle Gallery (Brooklyn). She is the founding editor and curator of the contemporary art publication Maake Magazine, an independent print publication featuring the work of contemporary artists and artist-run projects. Maake has collaborated with 12 guest curators, published 8 issues, interviewed over 200 artists, and co-hosted public events and exhibitions across the country. Burns is also the founder and director of Maake Projects, a new exhibition space in central PA.