Elizabeth Alexander | Old Blush
June 24 - August 5, 2023
Opening Reception: June 24, 2023 from 3 - 6 PM, 1412 Wazee Street, Denver Colorado 80202
For her inaugural show at K Contemporary, Elizabeth Alexander transforms the gallery’s Project Space into an abode of cast paper, porcelain, wallpaper, and other household objects. Old Blush explores the socio-cultural and psychological implications of American ideals around domesticity, status, and safety. Specifically, Elizabeth continues her foray into the aesthetic spectacle of natural disasters and how dwellings that presumably provide shelter and comfort get constantly bombarded by external weather events as well as internal emotional ones. She aestheticizes this calamity by combining natural and domestic materials in various states of decay and disintegration to create what she calls “beautiful disasters”. Floral wallpaper, designed by Elizabeth and based on historic patterns, serves as the installation’s distinctive backdrop with a succession of blooms systematically dying as the wallpaper pattern cascades down the gallery wall.
The illusion of safety is disrupted as the very creature comforts we cherish are used to display discord. Nature can no more be controlled than our ideals around domestic bliss. What’s both wonderous and ponderous is the elegance of Elizabeth’s beautiful disasters. Somehow, they remain as precious as they are chaotic. She manages to exquisitely manipulate our everyday décor to reveal that the values we transmit through ornament are as vulnerable as we are.
Elizabeth comments, “By deconstructing and then reassembling common objects, I call into question our personal and societal aspirations and how objects become their signifiers.”
Elizabeth’s work can be found in private, museum, and corporate collections such as the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Fidelity Investments, and the Mint Museum. She has been included in exhibitions at the Museum of Art and Design, the National Museum of Women in the Arts, the North Carolina Museum of Art, the Southeast Center for Contemporary Art, the Nasher Museum at Duke University, and the Currier Museum.