2111 Mission Street
Suite 401
San Francisco 94110

Installation and Sculpture
Amy Hibbs and Chiei Ishida

May 22nd - June 20th, 2004

Mission 17 presents Elevation, featuring new installation and sculpture by Amy Hibbs and Chiei Ishida. In distinct ways, each of these artists employs crude, everyday materials to construct fanciful illusions that evoke the spirit of play, instill a sense of weightlessness, and explore the dynamics of space.

Inspired by her experience of living with both coastal birds and the roaring jets of SFO, Amy Hibbs has constructed a series of “birds” with plastic bottles, tape, wires, clips, and springs, collected on “intuitive shopping trips” to the hardware store. Her birds appear to be both organic and inorganic, like a flock flying south as well as a line of 747s waiting to land. Hibbs’s installations explore space through flight, and the experience of air. The taught lines that hold her birds evoke a sense of speed and direction, as well as geometrically dividing the room. The bright colors and utilitarian character of her materials gives her work the feel of science-fiction, conjuring fantasies of adventure, self-determination, and technological mastery. But her art also raises questions concerning the experience of living in a world, where birds share the skies with machines, and sentient beings have progressively been replaced by merely mechanic things.

Since moving to the United States, Chiei Ishida has focused her art-practice on articulating her experience through her habits of consumption. Her work with rubber bands was first inspired by the elastic bands that package the green onions she regularly eats. They are little more than waste products that, by pinning to the wall, Ishida treats preciously like specimins in a science experiment. But the effect is not sobering. The rubber bands prove to be a playful medium, reminiscent of colorful bouncing balls, bubbles floating to the surface, or balloons taking off as the air rushes out of them. Hanging loosely on the pins, they take random, akward shapes like distorted, drunken faces. In its playfulness, Ishida’s work is humorous. But the mass of rubber bands reflect a refined sense of surface, depth and texture, casting subtle, multifarious shadows on the wall. As an articulation of her experience, the work looks almost like a map documenting people or events – a record of where she comes from, or where she has been these last two years.



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