Fox gloves: Midori Hirose & Sigtryggur Berg Sigmarsson

Helen’s Costume is pleased to present Foxgloves, a two-person art exhibition with a new series of sculptures by Midori Hirose and Sigtryggur Berg Sigmarsson’s energetic drawings on paper.

quiet lightning
air spiced with ozone

elegant fingers

far too many

or far too few hands

to claim their toxic blush

but toxic like a song maybe

Chase Allgood
Untitled (Foxgloves), 2022

Midori Hirose is a Japanese American interdisciplinary artist currently based in Portland, OR. In Hirose’s work, physical objects and materials are interchangeable with community bonds, recognizing space as a necessary part of the generative process through collaborations, historical narrative, perception (physiological and psychological), and storytelling. Within her new series, The Witch and The Devil’s Apple, Hirose elevates the everyday spud in playful and surprising ways. The humble potato, dimpled and dusty, doesn’t boast that it was the first vegetable to be grown in outer space, or that it can end hunger and reduce poverty as a staple crop. This unassuming nubby nightshade was first cultivated by indigenous peoples in South America 10,000 ago and is also celebrated in their ceramic pottery. The series’ title references that potatoes, now understood to be in the nightshade family, were once mischaracterized as “The Witch’s Devil’s Apple.” By illuminating this past, Hirose contemplates the complexities and ambiguity of history, and the power of storytelling to propel narratives. Using soft materials, Hirose transforms the hardness of the potato into supple and inviting objects that play with language, meaning, and fragmented histories.

Her work has been shown nationally and internationally, including solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, and Disjecta Contemporary Art Center (now called Oregon Contemporary) for the Portland Biennial. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at The Lumber Room in Portland, OR; East/West Project, Berlin, Germany; Newberg Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland, and Fylkingen, Stockholm, Sweden.

Sigtryggur Berg Sigmarsson is a visual, sound, and performance artist born in Akureyri, Iceland in 1977 and is based in Hannover, Germany. Sigmarsson exhibits his paintings & drawings internationally but is probably most known for his energetic performances at a wide array of venues. His approach is that of the trembling artist, struggling to make sense and direction out of a creative impulse. Regardless of the medium, there is a continuous search for order and chaos throughout his body of work. With his series of drawings, Sigmarsson distorts daily life by drawing very common objects in an performative way. For some time he has been releasing solo recordings with albums on Trente Oiseaux, ERS, Helen Scarsdale, Fire Inc., Hanson Records, Bawag Contemporary Vienna, Korm Plastics, Bottrop Boy, Ultra Eczema, and De Player.

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