Benchwarmers: zachary betts
“Something throws itself together in a moment as an event and a sensation: a something both animated and inhabitable.” -- Ordinary Affects, Kathleen Stewart
Benchwarmers derives from the transformation of mundane and peripheral objects. Betts imagines a place beside our reality, not outside our recognition, but different. Dysfunctional even. His sculptures are strangely familiar yet unplaceable like a lost memory reduced to a feeling. Their industrial forms mimic a use-value, but their function remains unknown. Aged surfaces reveal a history of use that begin to bend our realm of understanding.
In this installation, there are objects that acknowledge a kind of absurdity that is rooted in the familiar. Fragments of the common and the uncanny gently lean upon one another. Their close proximity conveys what Betts describes as “a sentimentality, a touch of pity perhaps, but also a sense of tenderness, compassion, and sometimes, romance.” This fraught interaction of ordinary materials offers the opportunity to experience the known anew; generating new perspectives and systems of value in an increasingly unstable present.
Zachary Betts currently lives and works in Minneapolis, MN. Betts received his MFA in Sculpture + Extended Media from the University of Texas at Austin and his BFA in Studio at the University of Wisconsin - Stout. He has exhibited nationally at Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ, University of Alabama in Tascaloosa, AL, and recently at FJORD Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. He has attended Vermont Studio Center and is a recipient of the 2018 Artist in Residence at the White Page Gallery in Minneapolis, MN. This will be his first exhibition in Chicago, IL.