ABOUT THE PERFORMERS | John Niekrasz is a composer, performer, and writer from Chicago. In 2015 he resided at the Cité Des Arts in Paris, France. He received his MFA in poetry from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 2004. John studied percussion in Havana, drum set with Milford Graves, and classical Hindustani tabla in Varanasi, India, with Pandit Lacchu Maharaj. He bridges the musico-poetic divide through text-based arrangement and syllabic musical notation. Committed to improvisation both as a performance modality and a compositional approach, John’s work struggles with such spectra as poverty and ornament, rigor and effortlessness, justice and militancy. John Niekrasz has created work as a fellow at the Atlantic Center for the Arts and the ACRE Artists Residency. He founded the Outset Music Series, directs the ACRE Orchestra, and has served as curator and vice president of the Creative Music Guild in Portland, Oregon. Constance Yunker is a dance artist with extensive training in many forms, including ballet, modern, jazz, and competitive Scottish dance. She has a special interest in the production elements of dance, and currently works as a technical assistant at a local dance theater. Constance is pursuing her BFA in dance and choreography at VCU and plans to graduate in May 2017. Kari Schackmann is in her second year in the Dance Department at VCUand hails from Frisco, Texas. She has been dancing for 16 years and has received many opportunities to perform in the Richmond community and beyond through VCU Dance.
ABOUT THE EXHIBITION | Through seismic stratigraphy, we are able to render images of cross-sections of the earth. By visualizing certain algorithms, we can create believable fictional landscapes. Heather MacKenzie’s solo exhibition, Compressed Reflections, collects stratified, constructed, extrapolated, and deconstructed landscapes that are mediated by the grid of the handwoven textile. Drawing from seismic stratigraphy used in oil prospecting, algorithmically-derived virtual landscapes, and elemental geometries used to process these data, Heather expands on the capacity of weaving technology and of cloth itself.
Heather MacKenzie is an artist, writer, and educator currently living in Richmond, Virginia as the Fountainhead Fellow in Craft and Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. In her work, Heather looks to the textile as a foundational piece of human technology that is sensual and material while simultaneously embedded with complex mathematical information. In two- and three-dimensional work, as well as performance, she examines other, equally foundational systems that span the material world and the abstract one: platonic mathematics, Euclidean geometry, and standardized measurement. For the academic year of 2014-15, Heather was a Fulbright Fellow in Paris, France, where she produced work and had a solo installation as artist-in-residence at l’École des Arts Décoratifs. She has studied traditional textiles in Ecuador, Ghana, India, Zimbabwe, as well as in Europe, and she has exhibited work recently at venues including the Mission Gallery and Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago, and PointDom in Toulouse, France. Heather received her BA from Brown University and her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Sediment Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday 1-7pm and by appointment.