Rachel Mica Weiss (b. 1986) lives and works in Brooklyn, creating sculptures and installations. She holds a B.A. from Oberlin College, an M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute, and is a San Francisco Foundation Murphy and Cadogan Fellow (2011). Solo and Museum exhibitions include OnSite Katonah, Katonah Museum of Art, NY (2016) CounterMeasures at Montserrat College of Art, MA (2015), In Place at Fridman Gallery, NY (2014) and Engulfing the Elusory at the San Francisco Arts Commission, CA (2013). Recent projects include commissions for the Art in Embassies Program in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and for Media Math at 4 World Trade Center, NY. She has created site-specific installations for the Norwood Club, Nassau Community College, Malin & Goetz, and PULSE NY, and her work has appeared in international publications, as well as in the Boston Globe, the San Francisco Chronicle, Hyperallergic, and Bad at Sports.
Collector Circle features “Portraits” as a highlight and to follow.
Rachel Mica Weiss creates sculptures and installations embedded with gravity and tension. Her installation practice is rooted in the craft of weaving—its technical processes, historical uses, and relationships to architecture. Using an environment’s unique architectural elements as her framework, she creates architectural interventions that draw upon textiles’ historical use as a means to divide and control space. Her thread installations, hand-strung on site in a fashion mimicking the warping of a loom, are super-saturated yet diaphanous planes of color that confront the viewer with an unexpected strength. Her monumental rope installations are walls or arcs of color that command space, engendering feelings of vulnerability and underscoring the laborious processes of their fabrication. By interrupting natural passageways or highlighting existing architectural elements, Weiss draws attention to the constraints within our physical and psychological spaces, and in so doing, shifts them.
Weiss’s sculptures combine textile languages with the density of stone, cast forms, and wood constructions. These microcosms of tension contain components that balance uneasily, vie for dominance, or are hopelessly intertwined, bringing questions of relative strength, gravity, balance, and value to the fore. Within each sculpture, she manipulates materials in unlikely ways, juxtaposing seemingly fluid wood forms against lava-like cast “rocks,” and dripping “gold chain,” actually constructed from hand-braided leather. By confounding the slippery connotations of formal and material characteristics, she unravels the “stable” preconceptions of wet-dry, heavy-light, strong-fragile. In all of her works, barriers—real, self-imposed, and imaginary—are set askew.