Happenings: Macabre & Mysticism at Red Roots Gallery

Motifs of macabre and mysticism have been visible in art since it’s inception. The curiosity of both the tragic and the transcendent dates back to pre-historic cultures, and remain a common theme in contemporary art.

In many early cultures artisans communicated with otherworldly beings though funerary statues carved for loved ones who were making their way from the earthly world to the afterlife. Later the Danse Macabre, an allegory of death, surfaced as an artistic genre throughout Medieval Europe. The Memento mori and vanitas traditions of painting, which reminds us that our earthly life is fleeting, flourished in the Renaissance and Golden Age of Dutch painting, and remain a popular genre that many contemporary works continue to reference.

Nicholas Alan Cope

Since the advent of the photography, people have been compelled to capture on film what is unseen by the naked eye; from the crime scenes of Weegee or the Disaster Series of Warhol, to the ever-popular genre of spirit photography, we are compelled to document that which questions and transcends our earthly existence.

Andy Warhol

Through dioramas of true crime scenes and the invisible nuances of historically haunted houses, our guest curator Corinne May Botz captures this hint of the supernatural in her photographic series “The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death” and “Haunted Houses.”

When curating the Macabre & Mysticiscm exhibition, Botz encountered a delicate balance between a sense of dread and a feeling of wonder in the submitted work. She identified historical motifs and used them to weave the show together. The exhibition is rooted in dark narratives that lie just beneath the surface of everyday life, evoking dark romanticism, summoning foreign bodies and creating a displaced experience.

Corinne May Botz

Laura Bell

Corinne May Botz on Curating Macabre & Mysticism at Red Roots Gallery: 

“Through carefully composed still-lives that recall vanitas paintings, Laura Bell and Eran Gilat create and represent the vanity of life and encroachment of death through symbolic objects. In Caitlin Parkers film Regression, we see an uncanny splitting of the conscious and unconscious self as a hypnotist guides us into fragmented slippages of time and place.

Phoenix Lindsey-Hall’s reflections of LGBT hate crimes throughout America explore notions of self and other. Her installations reveal the transgressive nature of everyday objects and put the viewer in the uncomfortable position of determining who is the perpetrator and who is the victim.

Darin Mickey

Emile Askey’s subtle diptychs target the subliminal stimuli of the viewer to summon both confusion and fear. Brea Souder’s surrealistic photographs icily dissect and recreate the dreams journals of well-known scientists and philosophers, while Darin Mickey’s photographs of everyday objects retain a matter of fact existence infused with a sense of mysticism.”


Brea Souders.

Macabre & Mysticism opens this Saturday, October 29th from 6 - 10pm at Red Roots Gallery and will remain on view until December 16th, 2011.

Red Roots Gallery
25 Central Park West
New York, NY 10023 

For more information visit: { www.redrootsgallery.com }

Macabre & Mysticism

Guest Curator
Corinne May Botz

Deadline for Submissions: October 16th, 2011 

Open Call for Submissions for Group Exhibition

The inaugural group exhibition will be curated around the theme Macabre & Mysticism. We are seeking photography, video, mixed media and installation work that exudes a dark romanticism and transcend one’s earthly experience. Inspired by the works of Edgar Allan Poe, Alfred Hitchock and the film noir genre, the theme speaks to both the light and dark qualities of life. From memento mori, mystery and magic to works that communicate to the divine, the dead or otherworldly, we are open to all interpretations of the theme. 

All photographic work accepted will be printed and produced at Conveyor Arts.

We’ve posted some images below to get you excited about Macabre & Mysticism:

Corinne May Botz, Dark Bathroom. 

Nicholas Alan Cope, Still Life. 

Alessandra Sanguinetti.

Francesca Woodman.

Elizabeth Bick

Duane Michals.

Alfred Hitchcock.

In a Lonely Place.

For More Information Visit: www.redrootsgallery.com