CARVALHO PARK  announces the opening of The Supernal Plane // Rosalind Tallmadge + Rachel Mica Weiss on the evening of September 6, from 6 – 9pm, with both artists in attendance. The exhibition is on view through October 13.

Once of and still referencing the domestic and decorative spheres, the materials in The Supernal Plane form something of romantic phantoms, and yet the works are distinctly in the immediate present – coming fully into being by the nuances of light and the place of their encounter. The gliding interplay of light along Weiss’ stratum of threads – in her framed, portal-like wall works or in the ephemeral architecture set by her site-specific installation – suggest spaces both seemingly tangible and imaginary. In Tallmadge’s brilliantly layered metallic surfaces, light’s reflection or refraction on mica flakes, silver leafing, sequins and glitter, creates its own experiential atmosphere. Transcendent and resplendent, it is by light and experience that take us into the work’s complex presence.


In viewing one of Weiss’ woven screens, one is continually reminded of his or her presence. The pull on the body is palpable, as chromatic and immersive planes transcend spectators’ physicality and sight. The work’s invitation is made not only by this physical and visual magnetism, but by the persuasion of a space beyond the screen. In this way, the artist acts as mediator between worlds and the works as thresholds of tautly-strung superimposed planes, beautifully paradoxical in diaphanous suspension and strength. The work foregrounds thread itself while reconsidering ideas of the space between the frame as illusionistic window. In utilizing polyester embroidery thread in subtle gradations of fog or nightfall, recalling color field painting, Weiss does so in a medium and manner more immediate or intimate to our bodies than pigment.

Concurrently in dialogue with craft, painting and sculpture, the conversation expands to include architecture and performance in Weiss’ architecturally-scaled threaded installation, titled Passage. Weiss’ work draws on textiles’ historical use as a means to divide, control and gender space, and conveys the psychological and experiential nature of how we navigate our constructed environments. Extending from skylight to floor, a decisive line in space opens to oscillating planes of seventy-five miles of lustrous threads, as one circumvents and passes through this spatial intervention. Weiss brings the body not only into discourse with the work but with the room. Making perception less graspable, the work is both inside and out, framing the gallery’s portal to the sky while giving materiality to light.


Nebulous and spectral, the works in this exhibition are optically elusive, ever-shifting by Tallmadge’s shimmering blend of alchemy. Possessing an active and seducing luminosity, the paintings act as gilded receptors harnessing light and their environment. These are both outward and inward works. They take one in like floating celestial bodies of a boundless atmosphere, while offering a deep dose of introspective immersion, a meditative space where the complexities of the works are unveiled over time.

Behind the lure of the sparkle, Tallmadge renegotiates the bodily and imaginative implications of glitter and sequins, continuing her examination of the politics of beauty and surface. The artist begins each work on reversible sequin fabric, feminizing the surface while setting the topographies onto which she accumulates layers of decorative materials, carrying associations of the beauty industry, costume, and inherently, the feminine body. The work is then re-contextualized by the language of Formalism, particularly that of monochrome painting, historically and drastically a male-dominant field.

In this new body of work, Tallmadge pushes the materials to their most atmospheric effect. Like the celestial plane itself, the paintings are both eerie and sublime. While silver and gold leaf occupy a special place in the imagination, the works’ titles allude to phantoms, to the point in orbit that a planet or asteroid is closest or furthest from the sun, or a record of what occurs in the night, only touching upon the phenomenology of these subtle light-based surfaces.