Body Presence at Yellow Peril Gallery
Yesterday after I left my day job, I had my sights set on visiting the new exhibit at Yellow Peril over in Olneyville. I avoided another opening, lately they just seem to be more stressful and do you get to really see the work anyway in a crowded room? I pulled in and trotted up to the door on the left to find it was locked. When I peeked into the window, I immediately smiled. The show is curated to perfection, full but not crowded. I could look down and see an exhibition list and wall labels were near each body of work that I could see, brownie points already. Slightly discouraged, I headed back to my car and turned back to the locked doors with sentiment and only now to see that the door on the right side of the space was ajar. I did an abrupt about face and headed back. When I walked in, to my pleasant surprise, all the right people were there, the most important being Flynn Grinnan, the artist himself.
Grinnan’s sculptures are fired clay moldings of body parts, though it sounds much more gruesome that it actually is. I had met Grinnan at a Yellow Peril opening a few months ago. He briefly explained his concept, but seeing these works in person, especially for someone who is involved with an ongoing passionate affair with the medium, they can’t quite be articulated into words… but I’m going to try.
The most resonating adjective that I can use to really describe his work is masculine. Obviously I’m fully aware of the sexist views I’m provoking, but I can’t help it. They are delicate and clearly have been handled with a gentle touch from the model to the kiln, but I don’t believe that I would ever call them pretty. Even the colors he chose for the works, earthy tones, felt masculine. The other thing I swooned over was the texture of the work, you just want to run your fingertips over it, but you can’t just touch things unless you buy them. Clearly I’m not the only one to feel this way about Grinnan’s work since I spotted two red dots.
See those two works on paper on the wall? They are outlines created by Grinnan’s color process. Marcel McVay, YP’s gallery manager, selected these two for the show. They remind me of Japanese ink drawings, in particular landscapes. The beautiful irony is that Grinnan uses a bamboo brush for these works, 完全な
Everyone was a bit of a zombie, worn out from the previous night’s reception, but I happily found out that Grinnan leaves this weekend for a fellowship up north for the next couple of weeks, a wonderful opportunity for him. I’m just thankful that I got to see him the same time I saw the show. Sometimes everything can become so cliche, but Mr. Flynn Grinnan’s work is definitely outside of the box in refreshing non petrie dish confusing kind of way.