Kirsten Hassenfeld creates extravagantly decorated, three-dimensional daydreams of over-sized precious objects with surprising material – paper. On Wednesday, February 7 at the SUNY New Paltz, Hassenfeld will give a presentation about these unusual objects d’art and her recent installations. The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m. in Lecture Center 102. It is free and open to all. Hassenfeld's lecture is part of the Student Art Alliance Art Lecture Series. It is funded by the Student Association.
Hassenfeld’s translucent gem and crystalline sculptures and installations are painstakingly crafted predominantly from paper. Transforming luxurious objects like jewelry into gigantic sculptures, Hassenfeld uses light to capture the glow of material wealth while teasing the viewer with what cannot be owned. Her works speak to notions of privilege, ownership, family pedigree and the confusion of what we have with who we are through an embarrassment of riches.
Reflecting on her work, Hassenfeld says, My work has evolved into a three-dimensional daydream in which my ambivalence toward material wealth and privilege is expressed. Precious objects speak about the cultures that produce and consume them: I revamp these objects with decidedly un-precious materials and varying scales, making fantasy tangible in a manner that calls into question what is considered precious. I conjure up for the viewer concoctions of wishes in an ephemeral form, promoting a state of wistful half-fulfillment.
Kirsten Hassenfeld is the recipient of a 2006 Pollock-Krasner Foundation, a Visual Arts Fellowship at the Fine Arts Work Center in Massachusetts, and a studio residency from the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation in New York City. She recently exhibited her work at The Brooklyn Museum and PS 1.
Her solo exhibition, “Objects of Virtue” (September 2004) at Bellwether Gallery in New York was reviewed in Art in America, TimeOut, the Village Voice and Frieze Magazine.