Sergei Isupov: PAST & PRESENT

Ferrin Contemporary, North Adams, MA May 7 - June 26, 2022

May 7 – June 26, 2022

Public Reception & Artist Talk
June 4, 4-6 p.m. with Sergei Isupov

FERRIN CONTEMPORARY
1315 MASS MoCA Way, North Adams MA

ABOUT THE EXHIBITION


North Adams, MA – Ferrin Contemporary is proud to present new works from internationally renowned sculptor Sergei Isupov. Sergei Isupov: PAST & PRESENT features new ceramic sculptures presented with both a multi-dimensional, mixed-media wall installation and independent pedestal-based works. Isupov and Ferrin Contemporary have been working together and presenting exhibitions internationally since 1996 and this will be the artist’s third solo show in our North Adams gallery location.

This exhibition comes at a particularly sensitive time for the artist. Born in Stravapole, Russia in 1963, Isupov is the son of a painter and sculptor. He was raised and educated in Kyiv, Ukraine and Tallinn, Estonia when both of these now separate countries were part of the USSR. Isupov’s family, his father, mother and brother, all established artists, currently reside in Kyiv, Ukraine. With the backdrop of the current war there and threats of Russian aggression in Estonia, Isupov’s recent studio work took on an urgency to counter the overwhelming anxiety and concern for his family facing down threats to their safety and the loss of their formerly peaceful lives. Now, with his wife, artist Kadri Parnaments and their daughter Roosi, they divide their time between two studios/homes in the USA and Estonia.

Isupov is a master of nonlinear narration. Combined with his unmatched, masterful skills as both painter and sculptor, the resulting works draw from the past and reflect on the present. Semi-autobiographical, Isupov’s intimate narratives interweave poignant representations of men and women, parents and children, shown alongside one another, their pets pointing to the naive sense of security we hold in our daily lives. These works explore individual, interior landscapes and the continually expanding dualities of the self within complex psychological relationships. Intensely personal yet universal, these works in the context of the present day, remind and call upon us to value, protect and preserve the precarious balance we all stand to lose at any present moment.

Isupov pushes the “in the round” idea of a sculpture to its apex by creating a narrative form that is then painted, using stain and glaze, to deepen the story. “Like an Eternity, pictured here, is a prime example of Isupov’s skill. He sculpts a form that becomes both man ready to fight and another man, or possibly a moon or ghost, in quiet observation. Two couples occupy different landscapes on their journeys, recto and verso of the piece, and their nakedity and or their brightly clothed bodies reveal and conceal their emotional states. Symbols of hope and confusion depicted as decorative shapes feature threatening clouds, caged animals, beams of light. We can’t help but wonder what did, or what will, become of them.

Both of Isupov’s 2022 exhibitions include works in porcelain and mixed-media drawings produced at Project Art in Cummington, MA. Project Art is a former 19th-Century mill building he owns with Leslie Ferrin, Founding Director of Ferrin Contemporary. The space hosts exhibitions, events, workshops, and artist residencies.

FEATURED ARTWORKS


“Long Journey to Nowhere”, 2022, porcelain, slip, glaze, 12.5 x 11.5 x 11″.
(
pictured in the left column, two views)

“Like an Eternity”, 2022, porcelain, slip, glaze, 13.5 x 10 x 9″.
(pictured in the center column, two views)

“Momentary Darkness”, 2022, porcelain, slip, glaze, 14 x 10 x 8″.
(pictured in the right column, two views)

ABOUT THE ARTIST


SERGEI ISUPOV

INQUIRE HERE

Sergei Isupov is an Estonian-American sculptor internationally known for his highly detailed, narrative works. Isupov explores painterly figure-ground relationships, creating surreal sculptures with a complex artistic vocabulary that combines two- and three-dimensional narratives and animal/human hybrids. He works in ceramics using traditional hand-building and sculpting techniques to combine surface and form with narrative painting using colored stains highlighted with clear glaze.

TurnPark Art Space: Earth & Sky fire sculpture


In addition to his solo exhibition at Ferrin Contemporary, Isupov will be building his first US, site-specific, massive standing dual figural sculpture to be fired on Sat., June 11 at TurnPark Art Space. This Earth & Sky fire sculpture and performance firing event is the third collaboration with Estonian Andres Allik who has designed and built petal kilns with Isupov in Star, NC and Skaelskor, Denmark. This will be the first petal kiln in New England. TurnPark Art Space is a sculpture park, contemporary art center, and event venue in West Stockbridge, MA.

Additionally, TurnPark will present Proximal Duality, a collection of Isupov’s works that are conceptually related to the Earth & Sky fire sculpture. Curated by Grigori Fateyev, RA, these works explore duality in relationships through physical forms, painted surfaces, and large-scale drawings on paper since 2008. Isupov’s Earth & Sky fire sculpture will be the centerpiece of TurnPark’s Annual Summer Festival which presents an array of multicultural performances, visual artworks, and music under the theme of Healing Flames. The festival begins at 4pm during the hottest part of the firing and will continue until the kiln is opened and reveals the red hot sculpture at 10pm. This event will also serve as a fundraiser to help the people of Ukraine.

A variety of performances and visual artworks will be presented on the TurnPark Art Space grounds along with music, food, drink, and activities for kids. Visit turnpark.com for more info and to purchase tickets; children under 12 free.

ALSO ON VIEW


May 14, 2022 — October 31, 2022

TurnPark Art Space
2 Moscow Rd, West Stockbridge, MA

Public Firing at TurnPark Summer Festival

June 11, 4-10 p.m. at TurnPark Art Space

Learn More & Get Tickets