Full Article by Laura A.L. Wellen
When we meet for coffee, Harold Mendez has just returned to Houston from the Rauschenberg Residency at Captiva Island (FL) via Chicago, where he opened a solo exhibition at Patron Gallery. His installation at Project Row Houses for Round 45: Local Impact runs Oct. 22 – Feb. 12, 2017. Somehow, he appears rested and revitalized by his travels. We talk about a sense of optimism that he is finding in the studio, and about the deep influence Houston has had on his newest sculptural work, both conceptually and materially.
Rick Lowe says he learned a lot from his recent trip to Saskatoon.
Earlier this week, the artist and former MacArthur fellow gave a lecture on gentrification at the Roxy Theatre. Lowe is best known for Project Row Houses, an art/social enterprise project in Houston, Texas that bought and renovated a number of run-down homes and turned them into art exhibition spaces and housing for artists
Now, Lowe has turned his attention to Saskatoon's Riversdale neighbourhood, an area that has seen massive changes as high-income condos have displaced low-income apartment housing.
For Devon Grigsby, past endeavors include her years as a medic in the United States Army after high school and her time as a manager with Harley-Davidson. Art has always been a part of her life in some form or another, and now, as a student at University of Houston, Grigsby has taken it upon herself to truly study sculpture. Initially she was enrolled as a painting student, but has since shifted to incorporating found and unwanted objects into her work. Constructing these found pieces into new forms, Grigsby offers commentary on the rapidly changing ways of communication with the speedy decline of personal interaction.
Challenging her audience to communicate through traditional means, Grigsby’s work beckons one to interact with it and possibly question such radical societal changes. Creating organic dialogue instead of the common stale screen shuffle, Grigsby reminds us that social communication holds so much more when lifted away from technology. During her time as a resident at Project Row Houses, she’s had the opportunity to use a living space to resonate her concept and hitting home the facts of interaction. Grigsby was kind enough to answer some questions about her work as well as her time at Project Row Houses.
Born in Chengdu, China, Huidi Xiang has expanded her love of design and visual art over the course of her current collegiate career at Rice University. A double major in both studio art and architecture, Xiang brings together elements of sculpture, photography, and video to test conflicting ideas along with displaying the outcomes of visual experiments. Private emotion, public domain, personal interpretations, and subjective feelings all flow together into a broader context transmitting straight to the viewer. During her time at Project Row Houses this summer, Xiang has taken these artistic concepts and expanded them into the thoughts of community.