I headed up to North County this week to check out the new exhibit by Teresita Fernández, which recently opened at MASS MoCA . I had read about this well recognized artist a few months before, so I was eager to venture to North Adams, to see her exhibit when it opened at the museum. The show, entitled As Above So Below, features all new works by this Brooklyn based artist.
Her show takes up most of the first floor exhibit galleries of MASS MoCA, with her piece, Sfumato (Epic), greeting you as you enter the space. Made up of thousands of graphite rocks, attached to the walls so to appear as a swarm of something tangible, beckoning you to follow as it goes. I thought of it as perhaps the wind, coursing its way through the gallery walls. MASS MoCA is well known for its expansive galleries, and this artist makes good use of their space.
As you follow Sfumato (Epic) through the galleries, you enter the vaulted, three story gallery, where Black Sun encompasses the vast space of the gallery room, the entire piece is suspended in mid-air. I couldn’t decide whether I enjoyed this art more as viewed from below or from above, looking out from the second floor balcony.
Another of Fernández’s works, Lunar (Theatre), filled yet another gallery with its presence. Evoking a feel of the ocean and its tides, I felt an enormous sense of peace as I walked the length of the room. I am always in awe, not only of the art itself, but of the amount of work it must take to create such large pieces. With thousands and thousands of clear colored beads in patterns on the floor, it seemed as though the tide’s foam was pushing its way toward the shore, where the viewer stands.
As Above So Below, is a unique play on the balance of the different energies of the earth and using contrasting elements, such as gold and graphite, gives the viewer a clear vision of this. There are several smaller works by the artist, balancing the larger pieces. It’s always a new experience visiting MASS MoCA’s inspiring exhibits and Fernández’s show is certainly one of the better that I have seen. The museum is worthy of an all day visit and with its great gift shop and places to eat, such as Grammercy Bistro or Lickety Split, you can easily spend the entire day at the museum. Though I didn’t spend the whole day at MASS MoCA this time( I hopped over to the Main Street area to do some shopping), I think I will be back before this exhibit leaves, to linger over some wonderful art in an equally fabulous museum.