Traces of Spaces (Untitled 1), 2012, Archival giclée print (edition of 5), 36.5" x 51.5"
Traces of Spaces (Untitled 5), 2012
Traces of Spaces (Untitled 6), 2012
Traces of Spaces
October 13 – November 11, 2012
Los Angeles, CA (September 18, 2012)— CB1 Gallery is pleased to present Whitney Stolich’s CB1 Gallery solo exhibition debut, Traces of Spaces. Traces of Spaces is a photographic series of 11 large- scale color photographs of four closed Paris metro lines (St. Martin, Champ de Mars, Arsenal, Croix- Rouge), which ran underneath the current functioning metro in Paris and closed in early 1939. The exhibition is the result of the artist’s descent in time and space and photographic archeology, a lot of which is shown in the advertisements and in the graffiti, which create a type historical palimpsest.
The exhibition will be on view from Saturday, October 13 through Sunday, November 11, 2012. A reception for the artist will take place on Saturday October 13 from 5-7 pm.
Traces of Spaces is about a place of abandonment yet not fully abandoned. It is an unofficial museum. It evokes mythical narratives, as there is a city of lights above and a city of darkness below. It is on a boundary of its own, acting as a space being preserved yet it is also ambiguous with people legal and illegal coming and going. It is the in-between space of the unofficial and official and the hidden and the historical urban archeology.
Upon entering the abandoned stations for the first time, Whitney Stolich says that the subterranean space felt like a time capsule. The first line, St. Martin, became a sort of gallery for advertising installations. Laid into the walls were ads from the forties in simple bright colors in the form of large ceramic tile moldings, one a dish detergent, one a brand of bleach, one a type of grain. The photographs in the series have an innocent hopefulness about them, almost naïveté. Continuing, the artist became intrigued by the paper posted with glue and the graffiti showing an interesting palimpsest of reliefs. Another abandoned line had been converted into an air raid shelter in the forties. Outfitted with ventilation pipes and intricate systems of air-lock doors to protect gas leaks during a bombing, the station, the adjacent track (also abandoned), and the eerie, green-lit hallways accommodated around 2,000 people.
Born in Monterey, CA, Whitney Stolich studied Urban Planning at Loyola Marymount University and received an MFA from Otis College of Art and Design. Her artistic interests explore themes that share the common ground between these two fields; that is, the complex reality often caused by economic development in western societies, as well as the way this can be visualized through the photographic medium. In her earlier series Landuse (2003-2004) she examined aspects of the residential development in southern California, in a way that seems to be suspended between reality and the elliptical vision of a scale model. In her series Third Space (2004-2005) and Land Above Sky Below (2007-2008) correspondingly, she attempts to read into two different aspects of land ownership, constantly renewing her artistic language according to the subject matter's requirements.