SONJA SCHENKCerritos College Art Gallery • Feb 20th - Mar 23rd, 2018
"The Box" is a solo exhibition featuring an interactive sculpture ("The Box"), paintings, installations, sculpture, prints, and a video from the series "The Collectors."

The exhibition runs from Feb 20th through March 23rd.

For info, directions and hours, please visit the gallery web page by clicking here.
Mysterious objects and enigmatic images have found their way into the Cerritos College Art Gallery in advance of the opening reception for Sonja Schenk's Art+Tech Artist-in-Residence exhibition, "The Box." Come to the reception on Tuesday, February 20th from 5-8pm to see how these pieces from Schenk's Collectors series relate to the interactive "Box" installation she made during her residency. Hint: As Fredric Jameson once said, "it's now easier to imagine the end of the world than it is to imagine the end of capitalism." -James MacDevitt, curator
Cerritos College Art Gallery is pleased to present a new exhibition by the 2017 Cerritos College ART+TECH Artist-in-Residence, Sonja Schenk. During the October 2017 - January 2018 residency period, Schenk worked with faculty from the Cerritos College Welding program, as well as the Cerritos College Film and Printmaking programs, collaborating to produce the components for her upcoming exhibition, The Box.
As Schenk explained in her residency proposal, the exhibition will consist of 'a complex set of parts, carefully packed in custom paper-pulp molding, along with disposable tools, hardware, and a large image-based instruction diagram,' all located inside a non-descript metal box. When unpacked by visitors to the exhibition, the contents of this box will expand to produce an assemblage (and/or multiple assemblages) large enough to fill the exhibition space.
In the gallery, in addition to the box and its contents, a video projection, produced with the help of a Cerritos College Film student, will replicate the well-known phenomena of online 'unboxing' videos. With the visual assistance of the projected 'unboxing' simulation and the semiotic assemblage mapping of a fold-out instruction diagram, produced within the Cerritos College printmaking facilities, the exhibition visitor will be encouraged, either individually or collaboratively, to attempt to 'complete' the work on display through the manipulation of its component parts.

"The Box (Exploded View)" detail, screen print and hand inkjet transfer on paper, 38" x 48" 2018

'Drawing inspiration in equal parts from Sol LeWitt and Ikea' the modular nature of The Box is meant to challenge simplistic conceptions of creative authorship at the same time that it highlights the ambiguous relationship between art and commerce during the contemporary collapse of late post-capitalism. As Schenk concluded in her residency proposal, 'in light of changes affecting our planet, the desire to organize, own, and occupy becomes ever more poignant; the action of buying or building ever more futile and desperate.'

"Unboxing the Box (feat. Yoshie Sakai)" HD video, 22 min. 2018

In addition to The Box, the gallery will also feature The Collectors series (of which The Box is a part). Inspired by rock collectors, desert dwellers and junk hoarders, 'The Collectors' is an exhibition of art works by Sonja Schenk that looks at the very human desire to acquire, accumulate, and arrange the objects we own. Just as ancient humans came across gold and other objects of beauty and decided to keep them, we all work daily to search, scavenge, acquire, quantify and organize, all to our own mysterious purposes. But as one peels away the metaphors attached to the objects themselves - the importance assigned to precious metals, the meanings attributed to various gemstones, the healing and mystical properties believed to be inherent to crystals and other rare minerals - it becomes clear what we desire to control and quantify is perhaps the very earth itself. In light of the changes that are affecting our planet, this desire becomes even more poignant, the action of collecting or hoarding is ever more futile and desperate. 'The Collectors' consists of paintings, installation works, and sculpture, including the interactive installation, 'The Box,' created through the Cerritos College Art+Tech Residency program in collaboration with the Cerritos College welding department.