Grace Summanen
The art history of draped fabrics stretches back at least as far as ancient Greece, with the statuary to prove it. Michelangelo Pistoletto was the twentieth-century’s master of piled clothing; more recently we have had Kevin Beasley and Shinique Smith. Always present is a trace of the human, and this remains true in Grace Summanen’s own experiments building towers and filling closets with coloristically chosen garments. During quarantine, she has introduced flatness to an otherwise dimensional practice, using wood shingles to create supports from which ruched fabrics emerge, their forms stiffened with latex, all of it tinted with paint. Not all folds are created equal, and these ones alternately protrude loosely like labia, get their frilly folds stuck tight between fence slats, burst through in a froth of rage, hang like curtains at the base of a window shade. There’s color involved too, applied in monochromatic hues of blue or green, with unsettling undertones of red and pink, blood and flesh to the natural shades of sky and grass.

—Lori Waxman 2020-10-21 10:45 AM
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