Hap Gallery is proud to present Tokens, Gold, & Glory, an exhibition by Wendy Red Star. The opening reception is July 14, 2016 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Viewing hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. The exhibition will run through August 28, 2016.
Tokens, Gold, & Glory evidences Red Star’s characteristic humor and wit, as well as her flair for experimentation with color, form, and materials. She draws from varied daily experiences, collected ephemera, real or imagined narratives, and her traditional Crow background. Her multifaceted Deer Decoys entice the viewer with shiny, golden surfaces, not unlike the natural-looking decoys used to lure other deer.
Diverging from the taxidermy tradition of mounting only the deer’s head, Red Star displays just the bodies — “the other part of the missing trophy” — in her sculptures. Instead of heads, Mylar fringe streams from the necks of these golden statues. The artist conveys her view that the entire animal should be appreciated, not prized for simply one part. Red Star simultaneously addresses feminist issues, considering the way women are often esteemed for portions of their bodies rather than their entire being. In these glitzy plastic deer is a sinister message about gold, and about the weight of history embedded in it. No other color implies so much value while connoting so much potential for ruin. Gold is power. Gold is gaudy. Gold is hoarded. Gold is pawned. Gold is an empty promise and a last resort.
Red Star has exhibited in the United States and abroad including at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Fondation Cartier pour l’ Art Contemporain, Domaine de Kerguéhennec, Portland Art Museum, Hood Art Museum, St. Louis Art Museum, and the Minneapolis Institute of Art, among others. She served as a visiting lecturer at Yale University, the Figge Art Museum, the Banff Centre, National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Dartmouth College, CalArts, Flagler College, Fairhaven College, and I.D.E.A. Space in Colorado Springs. In 2015, Red Star was awarded an Emerging Artist Grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation. In 2016, she participated in Contemporary Native Photographers and the Edward Curtis Legacy at the Portland Art Museum, and recently mounted a solo exhibition as part of the museum’s APEX series. Red Star holds a BFA from Montana State University, Bozeman, and an MFA in sculpture from University of California, Los Angeles. She lives and works in Portland, OR.