Woody De Othello’s Looking In @ Jessica Silverman, San Francisco
Jessica Silverman is delighted to present Woody De Othello’s Looking In, an exhibition of new works comprised of paintings on canvas and paper, ceramic sculptures, and a large-scale outdoor bronze. On view from October 2 to November 13, the exhibition is the artist’s second at the gallery. It explores still life as social comment and psychological inquiry.
A bright orange, ten-foot-high bronze sculpture stands in the center of the show. Titled Fountain, it consists of two column-like pipes punctuated by three knobs and three faucet heads. The graceful arc of the tallest tap culminates in a single drop of water. “Moving from the rising tides of the Florida tropics to drought-ridden California, the environment is always on my mind,” said Othello. “Among other concepts, Fountain is about abundance, scarcity, access and denial.” An inversion of Duchamp’s 1917 Fountain, Othello’s 2021 Fountain symbolically offers clean, life-sustaining drinking water.
The large bronze is in a sea of ceramic sculptures depicting mirrors, clocks and watches on stools and chairs, hanging lights, light switches, and oversized coffee-mug planters. Bearing witness to the way Othello uses clay as a spontaneous and improvisational material, these forms could be the lyrics to the instrumental jazz music that is in heavy rotation in his studio.\
Six oil-on-canvas and four acrylic-on-paper paintings portray domestic spaces full of time pieces, plant life and windows to the outside world. Vibrantly rendered in primary and tertiary colors, the paintings play with natural and artificial light sources that speak to intellectual perspectives and emotional states.
Accompanying Othello’s solo show in the main gallery is an exhibition curated by the artist in the upstairs space titled “Closer Together,” which features works by Asif Hoque, Faith Icecold, Evan O’Neal Kirkman, Mareiwa Miller, Cinque Mubarak, Tracy Ren, Malaya Tuyay and Xia Zhang.