intentionally, extravagantly, unconditionally
“It feels like engaging with the oracle of random chance.”
– Leonard Reidelbach
Photos: Minoosh Zomorodinia
Written by Weston Teruya
In intentionally, extravagantly, unconditionally, Leonard Reidelbach presents an immersive installation, loosely resembling the setting of an intimate function, a party-themed multiverse that highlights interconnectivity, potentiality, and moments of transformation. At the center of the space lives a six-foot mirror ball globe, cleaved in half by the bulldozers of the dump. The cross-section reveals a pale blue Styrofoam core that Reidelbach carved out to hold a new constellation of found objects–worlds within worlds. Motifs inside the globe are carried through the space in sculptural prints, found lighting, and atmospheric music. Images of the star flecked expanse of the universe, pulled from an astronomy book to create a backdrop, continues this sense of nested celestial spheres; an almost vertiginous reminder of the complexities we contain within us and the infinite possibilities that surround us.
During the residency process, Reidelbach prioritized an openness to whatever materials he was drawn to in the public reuse and recycling area–a kind of cruising. This way of looking lends itself to the potential for a collaboration with what he describes as “the oracle of chance through a personal affinity with a stranger (or their object).” In the exhibition, Reidelbach swirls together recurring printed patterns and the original objects used to generate the abstract screen prints, including carpet underlayment, mesh mats, and handmade knit lace. The side-by-side evidence of this transmutation from material to print invites us to consider the poetry in these variations.
Throughout his broader practice, Reidelbach often draws together chosen communities to shape extravagant and mutually supportive social spaces built from a collaborative imaginary. That desire for connection carries into this exhibition through his collaborative dialogue with the materials he encountered. The inclusion of objects that carry an implied-but-hidden personal stories like hand-knitted lace or a curated collection of old CDs, brings you into universes of things grounded in peoples’ lives and histories. Discarded worlds are born again, if only for the lifetime of the party.
Leonard Reidelbach is an artist, educator, and organizer currently pursuing an MFA in Visual Art at San Francisco State University, where he is a co-founding member of the Art Student Union. He has exhibited in the Bay Area at CUBE Space Gallery, Adobe Books, and with NCECA at California State University Sacramento, and was a recipient of the Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Award. He holds a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and completed the apprenticeship program at the Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia. Reidelbach has taught classes through Kala Art Institute, the New Orleans Community Printshop and Darkroom, and as a lecturer at San Francisco State University.