Distance / Absence | Mari Rantanen

Distance-Absence-Sea of Holes 1
Distance / Absence
Mari Rantanen
Curated by Bonnie Rychlak

October 23 – November 29, 2015
Opening Reception:

Friday, October 23 | 6-9PM

ArtHelix is proud to present, for a second time, the paintings of Mari Rantanen. Rantanen is a Finnish artist who has been living and working in Stockholm for almost 20 years and currently spends alternating three­month periods in New York City. Since her last exhibition at ArtHelix in October 2014, she has transitioned her paintings from sites that explored visual, historical, and cultural motifs, works that referenced those contextual patterns, colors, and designs, to a more complex emotional place that is at once exuberant and conflicted. Rantanen is now combining a more personal dissonance to her opus.

Mari Rantanen’s new paintings move away from her oval shaped canvases, a shape that hearkens back to traditional portraiture. Now the oval motif is imbedded inside a rectangular frame. She sees the shapes as a forces of two worlds, occupied in one place to mingle. The novelist Jhumpa Lahiri, from a lecture that Rantanen attended, inspired these new paintings. Lahiri discussed her Indian heritage, having been born in India and raised in the U.S., she spoke of how her parents would systematically save their money to take the entire family back home to India every year. Traveling from one culture to another, Lahiri noted that when she was in the U.S., she felt the absence of her Indian culture, effected by her parents but conversely, when she was in India, there was a sense of absence from her more westernized daily life in the U.S. Her parents’ longing for India was constantly palpable; creating a home life that was filled with feelings of isolation and longing.

This lecture had a profound impact on Rantanen, recognizing for herself this cultural dilemma; a sad sense of something that is always lacking wherever she is working and living. The oval shapes within rectangular frames are tropes for Rantanen, seeing the motifs as a complex sense of absence and distance, where one shape lacks what the other contains. The oval in the rectangle is the absence, one world within the rectangle as the container, which is off in the distance, always in the background.

However unlike Jhumpa Lahiri, whose description of absence and distance is melancholy and discontented, Rantanen is exhilarated by what would seem to be a state of dearth and remoteness. The exuberant colors she uses are combative and optically cheerful and pleasurable. Her distance and absence composition holds an extremely vibrant palate, creating a dissonant and frantic visual excitement. Everything seems to be happening at the same time in Rantanen’s paintings. The light the paintings generate and reflect presses on our frontal lobe, almost blinding anyone who looks upon them but not sad for those who do not recognize her narrative.

Mari Rantanen’s work is in the private and public collections of most all Nordic countries. She is also represented in numerous collections in Germany, England, Holland, as well as the United States. In 2015 she will be included in an exhibition Dark Days, Light Nights at the Kemper Art Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, October 1, 2015 to February 20, 2016.

Happy Hour | VCU MFA Alumni

Happy Hour
Virginia Commonwealth University
Painting + Printmaking MFA Alumni Exhibition 2014 – 2015

Curated by Arnold J. Kemp and Jackie Klempay

August 28 – September 20, 2015

Friday, September 11 | 6-9PM
rsvp to rsvparts@vcu.edu

Featuring work by:
Annie Albagli
Thomas Burkett
Adriane Connerton
Philip Hinge
Michael Hunter
Nicholas Irzyk
Harris Johnson
Aaron Koehn
Mike Linskie
Christine Navin
Lee Piechocki
Jason Rood
Aaron Storck
Grace Weaver
Matthew Yaeger

Image: Grace Weaver, In Search of Delicious, 2015
Oil on linen. 75 x 67 inches.



Bushwick Open Studios
June 5-7, 2015

ArtHelix, in collaboration with Chez Bushwick, is pleased to present a series of art installations and performances at Mona Liza Fine Furniture as part of our program for Bushwick Open Studios 2015. Please join us for a weekend of art, music, performance, and dance as we celebrate our neighborhood and community.

Mona Liza Fine Furniture
23 Meadow Street
Brooklyn, NY

Open Hours:
Friday June 5: 6PM – 10PM
Saturday June 6: 12PM – 2AM
Sunday June 7: 1PM – 6PM

Bushwick 1
a special sculpture installation by Michael McKeown


Audacious Auspicious Anfractuous Anomalous Asynchronous Autonomous Artists
Curated by norton

Featuring artwork by:
norton, Chris Ketchie, Patrick Paine, David Miller, Greg Reynolds, Joshua Rosenblatt, Yukari Edamitsu, Jeffrey Leder, Chen Dongfan, Chris Rucker, Angelino Salerno, Lindsay Packer, Levi Haske, Audrey Ryan, Rob Lomblad

with a performance by Bakarock Sunday, June 7, 5PM


La Gioconda
Curated by Wilson Duggan and Julie McKim

Featuring artwork by:
Albert Shelton, Amanda Millet-Sorsa, Beata Chrzanowska, Brett Wallace, Cannon Hersey, Christopher Tandy, Claudia Chaseling, Daniel Djuro-Goiricelaya, David Pierce, Ehren Clodfelter, Elia Bettaglio, Elizabeth Meggs, Eric LoPresti, Fanny Allié, George Horner, Guy Nelson, Hazel Lee Santino, Heather Green, Jaynie Crimmins, Jon Newman, Kelsey Shwetz, Kenneth Browne, Kiki Carrillo, Kurt Steger, Laura Charlton, Linda Schmidt, Luan Gashi, Marcy Rosenblat, Margaret Lanzetta, Mari Rantanen, Mary Cooke Cosh, Meer Musa, Michele Hemsoth, Miguel Libarnes, Patricia Fabricant, Patrick Farrar, Rachel Blackwell, Shingo Francis, Thomas Burr Dodd, Tif Robinette, Wilson Duggan …and more.

with a performance by Dirty Churches on Saturday, June 6 @ 9PM


a special presentation of work by Yuliya Skya


Performances from Chez Bushwick:
Sunday, June 7, 3-5PM

Sarah Lifson
Laurel Snyder
Alex Romania
Evvie Allison
and Judy Iocovozzi

Somewhere Between

Caption: Erik Hougen. Wells, 2015, Silkscreen on canvas, 30 x 40 inches

Somewhere Between

June 5 – June 14, 2015
OPENING RECEPTION: Friday, June 5, 2015 | 6-9PM

Curated by Julie McKim

A group exhibition featuring artwork by:
Sonya Blesofsky 
Matthew Conradt 
Angeles Cossio 
Jon Elliott 
Rob Fischer
Daniele Genadry 

Erik Hougen 
and Wyatt Nash

with performances throughout BOS weekend by:
Jeff Thompson | Performance for Modified Chord Organ and Laptop
Friday, June 5 at 8:30PM at ArtHelix

Jeff Thompson will perform using a modified chord organ outfitted for micro adjustments and a laptop running custom software, creating slowly shifting drones and subtle dissonances.

William Hempel | read red read
Saturday, June 6 at 4:00PM at ArtHelix

William Hempel is a New York City based conceptual and visual artist who creates language based works often pulled from the everyday landscape, both physical and mental.  Hempel uses strategies of collection to represent languages as aesthetic experiences and exercises in free thinking.  His multi person reading performances are read from texts prepared by these methods of language collection.

Dirty Churches | Saturday, June 6 at 8:45PM at Mona Liza Fine Furniture

Performance by Rachel Blackwell
Music by Jesse Gelaznik
Violin Carolin Pook
Viola Eric Elterman
Cello Eric Allen

ArtHelix is thrilled to host Somewhere Between as part of our program for Bushwick Open Studios 2015.

The work in Somewhere Between finds weight in the uncertain place between the familiar and the unknown. The eight artists in this show employ sculpture, site specific installation, painting, silkscreen and photography to look at memory, history and place. Pulling source material from their everyday lives and surroundings, they construct work that collapses times, balances between the abstract and the delineated, and is layered and fragmented. Their work offers fleeting glimpses into histories long forgotten, hints at unfounded narratives, and presents cloudy reminders of places, perhaps, never visited.

The visual clues offered seem both familiar and hard to place, taking the viewer on a circuitous hunt for recognizable forms and meaning. Once engaged in the work, only then is it discovered, that what appeared familiar, is actually unknown. The viewer is confronted with a memory, history, landscape that is not their own. It is here, in this limbo, between object and viewer that the work of these artists balances. This middle place where meaning is open ended, connotations multiple and subjective and possibilities infinite.

along, align

jesse moretti
along, align

June 5-7, 2015
OPENING RECEPTION: Friday, June 5, 2015 | 6-9PM

A group exhibition featuring artwork by:
Douglas Degges
Jesse Moretti
and Eric Oglander

ArtHelix at SELECT Art Fair

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at SELECT Art Fair
May 13-17, 2015

Center 548
548 W 22nd Street, NYC

ArtHelix is thrilled to announce our participation in this year’s SELECT Fair during Frieze Week, May 13-17, where we will be exhibiting work by Christopher Stout as an extension of A.O., his current exhibition at our gallery. 

ArtHelix will be joining Franklin Furnace, BRIC, Pioneer Works, Fuchs Projects, ODETTA Gallery, Tiger Strikes Asteroid, Transmitter, Rhombus Space, Fresh Window Gallery, and many more exciting exhibitors at this year’s Fair. 

Additionally, Christopher Stout | A.O. will remain on view Saturday May 16 and Sunday May 17 during our regular gallery hours 12-6PM at 299 Meserole Street, Brooklyn.



Wednesday May 13th | 6:00-10:00pm


Thursday May 14th | 2:00-10:00pm

Friday May 15th | 2:00-10:00pm

Saturday May 16th | 12:00-10:00pm

Sunday May 17th | 12:00-6:00pm

SELECT Art Fair is curated by Brian Whiteley

For more information and a full list of exhibitors,
please visit

Christopher Stout | A.O.

Christopher Stout | A.O.

April 24 – May 17, 2015 [Extended!]

Curated by Wilson Duggan

ArtHelix is thrilled to present A.O., an exhibition of paintings by Christopher Stout—the artist’s second project with ArtHelix and his first solo at the gallery.

Best known for working with cement and shredded writing, this series marks somewhat of a material departure as many of the works are fashioned from fused plaster cylinders on museum panel.

Stout has said of this work: “A.O. is about the discovery of telling a visual story while not using the entirety of the painting’s surface. To accomplish this, I built structural environments within the works that would allow the dynamic to be carried by the internal lines and negative space. A.O. is about an edifice to prominence.”

Christopher Stout is the Founder of Bushwick Art Crit Group (BACG), Brooklyn NYC’s nonprofit art think tank. BACG is obsessed with understanding Contemporary Art through the lens of the art & artists in Bushwick.

A.O. is on view at ArtHelix April 24th – May 17th. ArtHelix will be open Friday April 24th from 12-6PM, after which gallery hours are 12-6PM on Saturdays and Sundays, and by appointment.

The Artist reception for A.O. is Friday, May 1 from 6-9PM.

For more information and images of A.O. please contact Wilson Duggan, Gallery Manager, or visit http://www.arthelix.com.


Exhibition Teaser Interview, courtesy the Bushwick Art Crit Group’s Artist Film Library


Invite Dance2Dance Shani Ha
Saturday, April 18 @ 8PM

Tickets available via BrownPaperTickets.com

ArtHelix, in partnership with Curating for a Cause and SHIM will host a night of dance performances, sculpture, fine art, discussion, and dance celebration.

Participating Performers: ​ChristinaNoel and The Creature, Jennifer Roit, Sarah Chien, 96B, Danielle Russo Performance Project, and Maya Orchin with interactive body sculptures by Shani-Ha

Curated by Jackie Cantwell and Caitlin Dutton.

Dance 2 Dance​ is an all night dance and art experience. The event will begin with site specific dance performances consisting of spontaneously evolving choreography and sculpture during which audience members may be encouraged to join in.

Sculpture artist Shani-Ha will exhibit works that will be stimulated through the performances, experimentation and appropriation of them, either spontaneously or with a scenario. These actions will engage the viewer and performer directly and provoke co-presence and social interactions inside her pieces.

Throughout the evening dancers will initiate individual discussions after their pieces to encourage feedback with those present. We want to keep this open, fun and spontaneous, so don’t expect a panel discussion!

We envision the evening as an open source platform between audience and performers. ArtHelix was founded on the principle of encouraging collaboration between oftentimes isolated artistic communities. The dance and performance community in Bushwick is encouraged to meet and mingle with the visual art community in a gallery setting. The goal is to further connections and hopefully enhance the sustainability of each community inside the flourishing Bushwick arts community.

This will be a night to begin to create sustainable dialogue between dance, technology, fashion, performative, installation and visual. Please come help us celebrate and be a part of this new model.