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Hyper/Hypo at It's All About Things
May 9, 2015 - June 13, 2015
Opening reception May 9, 2015 from 4-7pm.
Gallery is open Saturdays 1-6pm, including opening day and as well by appointment.


Hyper/Hypo: Portrait of Artists as Free-Range Children


One strand of Modernism idealizes artists as modern primitives exploring the waiting room wallpaper with fresh eyes, fresh hope. These noble savages use their subjective vantage point to find new avenues of escape, even transcendence via mental mazes. Artists may soon be able to pass through walls. But right now, for quisling and resister alike, even outside the dome, play itself is at risk. 


As we speak, a low-grade controversy has emerged over how much free time, how much unorganized play children should have. How much freedom is too much? This thought boils up online whenever a child wanders, off schedule, or even off grid.


On the flip side of all this is the factory farmed kids, cage trained with formalized play dates. This brand of Modernism eschews the eternal return; this Modernism runs on rails towards streamlined perfection. These privileged alphas have only so many chess moves before they too lose all spontaneity, all sense of fun in the hurly-burly of getting with the program, of being with the program.


The program runs on time. The program is a force of nature, inevitable. The program is both transcendent beside and imminent among us. The ghost is in the machine, Deus Ex Machina. 


These works invite you to experience the pure presence of a thing directly in space, and more intimately, the pleasure of letting your mind roam free without interruption for an indeterminate amount of time, maybe until the sun sets and the street lamps go on or the cows come home.


Geoffrey Smith Todd’s works evoke an abstract simulation, like a game of strategy or a snapshot of contagion. These are works in process, patterns to be filled in or assigned values. They echo rule-based art making or programming like a Sol LeWitt. Similarly, Dominic Talvachio creates reverie inducing progressions, step and repeat patterns familiar to programmers, masons, shell dwellers, mathematicians and cosmologists.


Matt Irie pushes you back into and out of this world with abstractions that are both analytic and metaphysical, like Geoffrey Smith Todd, they point to an ongoing process in progress, something analogue and continuous being made into a digital, discrete signal. Tachyon paths depicted in institutional murals; they are a roadmap to transcendence.




Rob De Oude zooms out, or maybe way in, to show the Moiré patterns, created by layers of lines forming signals to noise and back into tune. If the universe is just energy, the warp and weft of its strings reveal a Jacquard loom weaving from a stack of bent, spindled and mutilated punch cards. This is the manifestation of thought as pure energy.


Robert Otto Epstein revels in the same repetitions and chance synchronicities  as the other artists in the show, but drops, or inserts, a vital keyframe, 

an instant of staccato cosmic, sawtooth noise. These remind one of raw video data, before being decoded, transliteration from video to ascii to something else. This is probability, recorded live.


Björn Meyer-Ebrecht’s sculpture materializes the pattern, reconstituted as if it was imperfectly sent through a transporter, with a fly in the ointment. It points to a nostalgia for institutional design based on art; art as a blueprint for flat packed furniture misassembled by human hand. “Socialize this,” it says, in Montessori blocks.


When you think about what contemporary art, with its dark, self-reflexive core, you might see rules, territories, contingencies, borders, zones, barbed wire play dates, and playground attendants. You might also see a way off the grid, unmoored.


Aaron McMasters 2015



Geoffrey Todd Smith Bio

Geoffrey Todd Smith lives and works in Chicago, IL. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Western Exhibitions in Chicago and Luis De Jesus Los Angeles. He has also been recently included in group shows at Hughes Gallery in Sydney, Australia, Circuit 12 in Dallas,TX , Charlie James Gallery in Los Angeles, CA and LoveyTown in Madison, WI. He has an upcoming solo exhibition in Fall 2015 at Western Exhibitions where he has been represented since 2006.


Dominick Talvacchio Bio

Born in 1976 in Philadelphia, Dominick Talvacchio went to Davidson College and the University of Chicago to pursue interests in mathematics, literature, and baseball. His work has been exhibited widely, including appearances in Sweden’s Luleå Biennial (2009), in Double Take, an exhibition organized by Public Art Fund in New York City (2009), at Travesía Cuatro in Madrid (2010), and most recently at a two-person show at Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum in San Antonio (2012-13), and a solo exhibition at Matteawan Gallery in Beacon, NY (2014). In 2009 Dominick participated in a residency at the M4 Gastatelier in Amsterdam, where much of his current work began to take shape. He has since had a residency period at Pioneer Works in Brooklyn, and looks forward to participating in the School of Making Thinking in the Catskills this summer. In addition to visual artwork, Dominick also writes poetry, short fiction, and crossword puzzles. He lives and works in Brooklyn.


Matt Irie Bio

Born in Fort Wayne, Indiana in 1977, Matt Irie lives and works in the Chicago area. Irie received his MFA from Northwestern University, Evanston (2002). He completed a permanent commission for the Chicago Public Libraries in 2005. Irie and his former collaborator Dominick Talvacchio participated in the Luleá Art Biennial, Luleá, Sweden (2009). They had a solo exhibition at Unit B Galley, San Antonio, TX (2007); and were included in Double Take, a public exhibition of site-specific sculptural works funded by The Public Art Fund at MetroTech, Brooklyn, NY (2010). Irie’s paintings have been included in numerous group exhibitions throughout the US. In 2011 he had solo exhibitions at The Wright Museum of Art in Beloit, WI and Ebersmoore Gallery in Chicago. In 2012 Irie was included in the 21st Evanston and Vicinity Biennial and a two-person exhibition at Blue Star Contemporary Art Center in San Antonio, TX. In addition to his activities as an artist, Irie is a member of Cougars, a rock band based in Chicago.

Björn Meyer-Ebrecht Bio

Björn Meyer-Ebrecht is a multi-disciplinary artist whose practice extends from drawing, collage, and sculpture, to architectural installations and curatorial projects.  His work addresses questions about the relationship between objects and ideas, aesthetics and politics, and architectural and social spaces. In his studio-based work he often uses found material such as books and architectural imagery, and his work functions as elaborate display of these objects. In his large-scale sculpture he plays with the idea of functionality, creating actual architectural objects either as seating/platforms or as display architecture for other artist’s works.

He was born in Hamburg, Germany, and since 2000 has been based in NYC. After graduating from the University for the Arts in Berlin, he received his MFA from Hunter College in New York City in 2002. His work has been included in group shows in a variety of venues in New York and beyond, including Lesley Heller Workspace, Studio 10, Storefront Bushwick, Maxwell Davidson Gallery, Pocket Utopia, New Jersey Visual Arts Center, and Galeria Casa Triangulo in Sao Paulo, Brazil. In April 2013 he had a solo show at the Matteawan Gallery in Beacon, and a two-person show at Storefront Ten Eyck in February 2014. 


Rob de Oude Bio

Rob de Oude studied painting, sculpture and art history at the Hoge School voor de Kunsten in Amsterdam and SUNY Purchase, NY. He has shown in the US and abroad, notably at: Galerie Gourvennec Ogor in Marseille, France, Storefront Bushwick in Brooklyn, NY, McKenzie Fine Art in New York, NY, BRIC Rotunda in Brooklyn, NY, Galerie van den Berge in Goes, NL,  City Ice Arts in Kansas City, MO, and has participated in several art fairs in New York, Miami and Paris. De Oude has been featured a.o. in the NY Post, L Magazine, Artnet Magazine, NYArts Magazine, The New Criterion, Bushwick Daily, ARTNews and has been noted by Brooklyn Magazine as one of the 100 influential people in Brooklyn culture. He has his studio in Brooklyn, NY, and is co-director of Transmitter, also in Brooklyn, NY. 


Aaron McMasters Bio

Aaron is a writer and artist residing in the Greenpoint, neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York.  He studied sculpture painting and philosophy at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington (BFA 1995), continuing his art studies at the Mt. Royal School of Art  in Baltimore, Maryland (MFA 1997). In the spring of 2001, Aaron graduated with a MFA in Computer Art from SVA, focusing on 3D modeling and animation. While in Baltimore, Aaron helped produce student run “Augenmusic III” in collaboration with the Peabody Conservatory of Music and Maryland Institute, College of Art. He also participated in “The Light Show” in Brooklyn (2000), an artist-run  group show of 60 artists in an alternative space which vanished into a black hole. Aaron grew up as a free-range child.

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