Cristina Muñiz, Annie Woodfill and Zach Voss speak in Tungs

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The Charlotte Street Foundation’s latest guest-curated exhibition at its Paragraph and Project Space galleries includes two artists of Vulpes Bastille’s Other Windows, which also ends soon.

Joel Damon, half of the curatorial team of Omaha, Nebraska’s Project Project, has titled the show Tungs — a pseudo-etymological take on the organ that is largely responsible for making human speech possible. As he writes in exhibition materials, these works by Cristina Muñiz, Annie Woodfill and Zach Voss (whom Damon chose from a pool of 25 artists) are together here “to encourage these three artists to continue speaking in whatever language they deem appropriate.”

We viewers, however, are usually too impatient to remain unknowing while we look at something, so the insights that these artists provided last Saturday in a talk come in handy — especially when comparing this show with Other Windows, where creations by Muñiz and Woodfill converse with art by Olivia Gibb.

In the broken-up space here, Woodfill’s installation of balanced materials, such as repurposed cardboard and Styrofoam, feels more deliberately placed than it seems in Vulpes Bastille’s one vast room. Woodfill told the audience that the lines of the room form a grid, against which these arranged objects ask us to read the space between them. Her favorite piece in the show, “Lyratese,” is a found sycamore branch propped in the northeast corner; catching the light in its gold-adorned plastic drape, it creates fleeting additions to the gallery’s grid and angles.

%{[ data-embed-type=”image” data-embed-id=”” data-embed-element=”aside” ]}% Muñiz’s “The Last Time” and “Passing Timidity” — her latest and large canvases, created after her Charlotte Street studio residency — depict among their narratives the story of the mark-making, of the artistic act itself, what she calls the “autobiography of the hand.” Warren Rosser, chairman of the painting department at the Kansas City Art Institute, was at the talk and has been following Muñiz’s work since she was at school. He told the room that these newer paintings appeared less formal than earlier works and pointed to what he called the characters she was allowing to inhabit the space.

Voss has only two works in Tungs, and they emphasize a visual vocabulary of inexpensive and accessible properties: chicken wire, brown paper, glue. His aim, he said, is to address the idea of how homogeneous items — mass-produced furniture, for example — can be profitable and to upset that by casting chair forms (he calls them “floaters”) over and over in paper. Six such forms hang in perfect balance by nearly invisible filament and are recognizable as oval plastic chair seats. They are too high, by design, to accommodate any attempt to sit in them, and they do seem to require, more than the work of the other artists in Tungs, outside interpretation to read.

His “Flototype,” around the corner, instead sits on the ground. With a nearly uncountable array of surfaces, the craft-paper boulder is at once too delicate to support anyone as furniture and too engaging to be questioned.

Cristina Muñiz, Annie Woodfill, Zach Voss
Through November 28 at Paragraph and Project Space galleries, 21-23 East 12th Street,

Categories: A&E, Art