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Before It Falls Apart

Kiah Celeste

August 14-November 7, 2021. 

Artist Kiah Celeste rescues outmoded materials that have been broken down and removed from the matrix of industrial and consumer use, restabilizing and resituating them into sculptures before their incineration, before liquidation, before they fall apart. Bridging her new work in sculpture with her foundational practice in photography, her images display her body as a performative sculptural element, a stand-in for an object that might otherwise serve as anchor or stabilizing force for the entire structure. Through a trial-and-error process of stacking, bending, leaning, and finding a stable connection between disparate objects, her sculptures often substitute her presence with a clever use of self-fashioned sandbags that align with the malleability of an acquiescent body. Relying on a kind of megalithic engineering that was used to construct Stonehenge, or the cairns that mark the presence of human life along walking paths, Celeste trades rocks and other organic matter for the residue of our manufactured landscape, transforming industrial debris into synergistic constructions for a post-industrial world. 

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Read Natalie Weis' review of the show in