The Feminist Divine, Gisela Colón at SCAD Museum of Art

The Feminist Divine On view through Jan. 2, 2023, 
Gisela Colón’s dynamic sculptures offer mutable, perceptual experiences through the refraction, reflection, and emission of light. Generated with advanced production methods such as carbon fiber casting meant for aerospace applications, Colón’s curvilinear forms emanate a seductive, iridescent glow, fluctuating in color based on environmental conditions and where the viewer stands in relation to the work. Colón coined the term “Organic Minimalism” to describe the dual condition of her work: reductive, yet active and seemingly alive. While situated within the lineage of Minimalism, Colón’s practice refuses the stasis and rigidity of structure typical of work by her male predecessors, embracing the transformative and transcendent. Informed by the natural world and rich biodiversity of her home island of Puerto Rico, her work invokes the “feminine divine” as a method of creating space for underrepresented peoples.

Gisela Colón, Ultra Spheroid (Lyra), 2022, Blow-molded acrylic, 90 x 42 x 12 in.
Courtesy of the artist.

Colón’s exhibition focuses on two of the artist’s most well-known bodies of work: pods and monoliths. The wall-mounted pods are biomorphic structures akin to amoebas, cells, seeds, or viruses. Their graceful forms are composed of layers of translucent acrylic with a visible core. Hung directly on the gallery’s early 19th-century hand-wrought Savannah Gray Brick wall, the immaculate sculptures stand in stark contrast to the textured and porous surface, juxtaposing the historic and futuristic. Pristine vertical structures with rich surfaces, the monoliths radiate cosmological pearlescent swirls and rise from the ground like the ancient and mysterious constructions that span cultures and time, from Egyptian obelisks to Scandinavian runestones. The works on view form part of a distinct body in the artist’s larger oeuvre and are presented cohesively for the first time. Their scattered configuration in the gallery directs visitors to weave between their shimmering surfaces to experience the alchemical material that fuses science and mystery.

The Feminist Divine is organized by SCAD Museum of Art associate curator Ben Tollefson.

About the artist
Gisela Colón (b. 1966, Vancouver, Canada) has exhibited internationally at venues throughout the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East including Desert X AlUla, Saudi Arabia; Frieze Sculpture, London; and the Pyramids of Giza, Egypt. Colón’s work was included in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s historic survey exhibition Light, Space, Surface, which traveled to the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, Mass., and the Frist Art Museum, Nashville, Tenn. In 2022, continuing the expansion of her practice into the realm of land art, and as part of the exhibition Godheads — Idols in Times of Crises, Colón will embed a monumental work within the Lustwarande, a baroque forest in Tilburg, Netherlands. Colón will also present a large-scale site-specific public art project in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in fall 2022. Colón’s work is held in the permanent collections of LACMA; the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Calif.; Pérez Art Museum Miami; Mint Museum, Charlotte, N.C.; Palm Springs Art Museum, Calif.; Grand Rapids Museum of Art, Michigan; and the Daum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, Mo., among others. Colón attended the University of Puerto Rico (B.A., economics, magna cum laude, 1987) and Southwestern University School of Law (J.D., 1990). Raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the artist lives and works in Los Angeles.