The 38th Annual Wind Challenge Exhibition Series

Established in 1978, the Wind Challenge Exhibition Series is an annual juried competition that is committed to enriching and expanding people’s lives through art. Three Wind Challenge Exhibitions are held from September through May, featuring the work of exceptional artists living in the Philadelphia region.

The Wind Challenge Exhibition Series is made possible with thanks to generous support from the Wind Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and through Fleisher members.

Anne Canfield

Artist statement:
I draw and paint on a tiny scale and am inspired by the detail, the whimsy and the geometric naturalism of both early Netherlandish and Indian Miniature painting. I use a variety of media as point of departure, ranging from personal photography to elements of film. Loosely narrative, my pieces reveal quiet, solitary moments as a sense of time or place is trapped and brought to stand still.

Lewis Colburn

Artist statement:
At best, objects make unreliable tour guides. They cannot argue with the narratives we imagine for them. As a maker of sculpture, I am interested in the way we re­interpret and re­tell the past through the filter of our current experience. These re­tellings also manifest themselves as objects: the museum replica, the diorama, the stage set, or the laboriously hand­sewn and fussily detailed garments of a reenactor.

Objects such as these are the jumping ­off points for my projects. In particular, I am interested in the approximations and shortcuts that we make in the interest of re­creating a given historical experience. Take, for example, a period interpreter on Philadelphia’s Independence Mall, clad in an 18th­century frock coat sewn from flimsy polyester. Making my own meticulous replicas of historical objects generates its own little slippages and elisions, whether or not my objects can ‘pass’ as authentic. These slippages connect us to larger ideas about how we write and re­tell history, questioning the narratives we choose to emphasize and those we neglect.

Aubrey J. Kauffman

Artist statement:
I grew up in the industrialized northeastern part of the country where I still live and work.  This environment has had an impact on what I photograph.  For more than 30 years the themes of urban architecture and man’s impact on the environment has long challenged me artistically and intellectually.  I witness this in urban structures as simple as building façades in a strip mall to the deserted athletic fields of parks and playgrounds.  The resulting work is an interaction of formal and organic elements.  Through my viewfinder I have organized these banal yet complex images, first as flat two-dimensional objects and then as a multi-layered space of visual elements.  I am content on interpreting and portraying this as an everyday world.

Jacintha Clark is a mixed-media artist interested in exploring the way we connect to the world around us by fusing materials such as iron, glass, and porcelain. Her work ranges from quiet, personal introspection to playful, and scientific. Jacintha holds a Associates Degree in Arts from Arapahoe Community College, a BFA in Fine Arts from Metropolitan State College of Denver , a Post Baccalaureate certificate from Maryland Institute College of Art, and an MFA from Pennsylvania Academy of the Arts. She was born in Alamogordo, New Mexico and currently lives and works in Philadelphia.

Marianne Dages makes work that draws from the book as information source and object. She combines traditional letterpress materials with unconventional techniques and materials to create work in the form of books, drawings, prints, and installations.

Nichola Kinch

Artist statement:
My creative practice revolves around the use of historical and contemporary technologies to explore image and image production as finite and concrete occurrences. This overarching principle propels a research agenda that spans pre-photographic practices to computer aided design and manufacturing and centers on the creation of poetic and fantastical objects and installations that explore image production as a metaphor for a variety of fictional constructs. I am interested in the moments in which we as viewers become aware of image as a mediated production. My work of the past several years takes root in the research of Victorian era image production, early photographic developments, and the advent of moving image machines. I have a particular fascination with animation machines and optical toys. The physicality of these devices, and the purposeful interaction required to operate them make palpable the power and limits of visual perception. The deliberate and specific engagement required for the generation of these illusions offer an instance where the producer’s role in the creation of image becomes tangible.

Kate Clements

Artist statement:
“What drives modern man so strongly to style is the unburdening and concealment of the personal, which is the essence of style. Subjectivism and individuality have intensified to breaking-point and in the stylized designs, from those of behavior to those of home furnishing, there is a mitigation and toning down of this acute personality to a generality and its law.” Written over a century ago, these words by German philosopher and critic Georg Simmel have proved remarkably enduring.

Fashion, adornment, and ornament have vicious lifecycles whereby newness is simultaneously associated with demise and death. Though fashion and adornment are closely related to the body, ornament can expand to architecture and environment. My work blurs the boundaries between body and object, beauty and repugnance, outer and inner.

I show the persistent interplay between imitation and differentiation that underscores the association between fashion and modernity.  I explore how taste—even ‘bad taste’—can be celebrated in aristocratic society but once mimicked by a different social sphere quickly becomes kitsch, disdained as ‘aesthetic slumming.’

Kitsch excites the desire for ownership, suggesting ‘hominess’ or the kind of clutter in which objects are assembled in an attempt to signify wealth and taste. Chintz, beads, and lace often function as unnecessary embellishments piled on to dress up an object and disguise its humble origin; plastic preserves but ultimately destroys the object. These decorative acts function as an aesthetic veil that draws attention only to reveal deficiencies.

Raphael Fenton-Spaid

Artist statement:
My work explores the visual and material manifestation of contemporary social relations, specifically cultural, domestic, leisure, power, and labor relations. These established relationships aim to articulate the constructedness of the creative, cultural process while directly referring to the complexities of public experience. Materials and images are both found and sourced, providing the basis for both, a poetic analysis of aesthetic, behavioral, psychological conventions, and a creative exploration of potential structures and attitudes.

Painting is a haven for me to articulate a repressed crude sense of humor, and infantilized indulgences.

Tiffany Tate

Artist statement:
The subjects I chose to work with provide confrontations through their relationship to the viewer via scale and spatial orientation. Through this confrontation, I hope to reveal a mental space where physical landscapes become equated to internal ones and the desire to touch, look, discover, and relate reconfirms the symbiotic nature and desire for intimacy between the viewer and the work and consequently, the viewer and their worldly surroundings, both animate and inanimate.

Vast space, emptiness, repetition and texture are visual tools I employ to provide a moment where external environments and internal dialogues can meet and intertwine. Scale shifts between expansive, macro views and highly specific, micro worlds work to draw the viewer in through their mystery and plant them in the described space where they are discovering these places and objects through their own sensational experience of looking.