Teresa Baker, Out West - October 18th - December 1st
Reception: October 18th, 6-8:30 pm
Conversation: Teresa Baker and Jennifer Foerster, facilitated by Claudia La Rocco - Sunday October 20th @ 1pm.
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Teresa Baker has made a practice of working with unconventional materials - using large swaths of felt, mesh and even AstroTurf as a ground for works that explore color, texture and space. As she writes, “I find these materials have a bare quality to them that allow them to be transformed.” Linear, looping marks made with materials like yarn and string often suggest a kind of mapping of this ground. Roughly cut edges and clumpy blobs of soldering take their place within a visceral set of relationships.
Baker’s sense of space is indelibly informed by her time spent growing up on the Northern Plains. She writes, “I always draw from memory of moments and physical spaces; hours spent on the Northern Plains landscape where I am from, exploring, walking, looking, working—in a place much bigger than ourselves.”
Recently, she has begun incorporating traditional materials that reference her Native American heritage more directly—like buffalo hide, buckskin and willow, merging them with the synthetic materials that she has always used. All of the materials are taken out of highly specific contexts and embedded in a new terrain in relation to one another. The resultant works move effortlessly between the intimate and expansive, the referent point and a sense of openness and integration. As Baker writes, “This work is a long history of fragments, coming together to form a whole.”
Local poet, Jennifer Foerster, has been commissioned to present a new poem, which will be released at the opening reception for Baker’s show. There will be a conversation with Baker and Foerster facilitated by SFMOMA Open Space editor, Claudia La Rocco, on Sunday October 20th at 1 pm.
This exhibition is part of our Creative Engagements series and is generously supported by funds from the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.
Teresa Baker (Mandan/Hidatsa) Baker received her BA in Visual Arts from Fordham University, New York in 2008, followed by her MFA from the California College of Arts in San Francisco, 2013. Baker received the Headlands Center for the Arts Tournesol Award in 2013. She has recently had exhibitions at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas and Gray Contemporary (Houston). In the Bay Area, she has shown at the Luggage Store Gallery, Et Al., Kiria Koula, YBCA, and Interface Gallery, among others. In 2018, her visual essay, Sego Lily, was published by Open Space (SFMOMA).
Jennifer Elise Foerster is an alumna of the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) and received her MFA from the Vermont College of the Fine Arts. She is the recipient of a NEA Creative Writing Fellowship (2017), a Lannan Foundation Writing Residency Fellowship (2014), and was a Robert Frost Fellow in Poetry at Breadloaf (2017) and a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford (2008-2010). She has also received fellowships to attend Soul Mountain Retreat, Caldera Arts, the Naropa Summer Writing Program, Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Hermitage Artist Retreat. A member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma, she teaches at the IAIA MFA Low-Residency Program, and co-directs For Girls Becoming, an arts mentorship program for Mvskoke youth in Oklahoma. Jennifer is the author of Leaving Tulsa, (2013) and Bright Raft int the Afterweather (2018), both published by the University of Arizona Press. This spring, she will be completing her PhD in English and Literary Arts at the University of Denver. Jennifer grew up living internationally and now lives in San Francisco.