Through: an exhibition with the artists of Grizzly Grizzly

Erin Boyle, Amy Hicks, John Kozacheson, Diedra Krieger, Katie Leech, Connor Longo, and Jayne Struble

The Arts League, 4226 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104

On View: April 11 – May 31, 2024

Reception: April 20, 2024 from 10:30am to 12:30pm

Hours: Mon-Fri from 1-6 pm, Sat + Sun by appointment

Established in 2009, Grizzly Grizzly has supported emerging and mid-career artists for 15 years, providing a physical exhibition space and producing a blog for critical art writing. As part of its mission, Grizzly Grizzly refrains from exhibiting the works of its artist members in its own space. However, periodically, the members of Grizzly Grizzly are invited to collectively show their own works at an external site, presenting an exciting opportunity to discover connections between their work. 

Marking Grizzly Grizzly’s 10th off-site exhibition, Through at The Arts League features the work of current artist members: Erin Boyle, Amy Hicks, Diedra Krieger, Connor Longo, Jayne Struble, intern John Kozacheson, and resident designer Katie Leech.

For this show, the artists of Grizzly Grizzly use the multifaceted concept of the word “through” as a metaphorical bridge between the seen and the unseen, the tangible and the abstract. Each artist uses a particular lens to explore what it means to live through evolving conditions such as power imbalances, environmental degradation, urban flux, and the order and chaos of motherhood. Additionally, they are constructing an original collaborative contraption from everyday objects where a marble may be inserted and, ideally, move through by gravity (or, if necessary, guided by hand) to evoke processes that we flow through, go through, and look through in order to see it through.

By exploring femininity and motherhood through found objects, Erin Rose Boyle portrays a delicate dance between order and chaos. In her sculptures vulnerability emerges as a source of strength, urging us to embrace weaknesses for innovation.

Amy Hicks accesses historical footage to consider the influence of power dynamics on societal values. Focusing on labor issues and environmental degradation, she uses erasure-animation techniques in her video work to explore the blurred lines between good and bad intentions. 

Influenced by cinema, horror, and the tools of media, John Kozacheson transforms raw materials like plastic and metal into structures of skin, bone and machine, producing unsettling images of human evolution. 

Diedra Krieger creates playful immersive environments using post-consumer water bottles and bioinspired robotics. Her artwork addresses concerns about access to drinking water while providing an organizing structure for social relations. 

Katie Leech’s artwork melds urban inspiration, tape-defined shapes, monoprint printmaking, spray painting, and the rhythm of city life, celebrating the complex interplay of control and spontaneity.

Through grotesque and distorted imagery, Connor Longo’s paintings draw parallels to circuses and casinos as symbols of distractions and profit-driven tactics. His paintings portray the dismantling of human identity, shedding light on power dynamics and the intentional obfuscation employed by those in control. 

Jayne Struble focuses on the impermanence of our surroundings. Through graphite drawings integrated with video, performance, and objects, Struble captures the subtleties of nature’s beauty and the inevitability of change. 

As in our previous off-site exhibitions, our collaborative efforts throughout the production of this show result in a collection of objects that reflect the inner workings that make up the Grizzly Grizzly collective.

The artists will attend the reception.

Brief Artist Bios

Erin Rose Boyle (Mount Laurel, NJ) creates sculpture and installations with unconventional materials, blending traditional skills with recycled elements for both playful and serious layers. With a BFA from Syracuse University and an MFA from the University of the Arts, Boyle serves as Assistant Director of Academic Enrichment Programs and Adjunct Assistant Professor at Tyler School of Art. Her work has been showcased in Philadelphia, New Jersey, and New York, including a recent solo exhibition at Pink Noise Projects.

Amy Hicks (Philadelphia, PA) explores time-based media like film, photography, and video projection, melding pre-existing material with original footage to scrutinize the impact of belief systems on individuals and society. An award-winning artist, Hicks holds an MFA from Stanford University and teaches as an Associate Professor at the University of Delaware. Her work has been exhibited globally, showcasing her DIY methods of transforming 16mm film into digital video.

John Kozacheson (Philadelphia, PA) weaves life experiences into sculpture and video, drawing from religion, cinematic horror, and analog static for inspiration. As a sculptor, he merges tactile video elements with sculptural forms, often using plastic and metal to manipulate the human figure while exploring the fusion of diverse artistic mediums to craft new narratives. Kozacheson earned his BFA from the University of Delaware and currently interns for Grizzly Grizzly.

Diedra Krieger (Philadelphia, PA) is an interdisciplinary artist and curator exploring the convergence of art and technology, with international acclaim for her projects showcased at esteemed venues like the National Folk Festival. Holding an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Art and an MA from Monash University, Krieger’s practice spans robotics art residencies and workshops at prestigious events like ICRA 2024. Her work has been reviewed in prominent publications including The Art Blog, The Philadelphia Inquirer and Hyperallergic.

Katie Leech (Philadelphia, PA) merges traditional printmaking techniques with innovative approaches, crafting tactile, experimental works that challenge perceptions and foster collaboration. With degrees from the Maryland Institute College of Art, DePaul University, and Boston University, Leech’s design enriches her artistry, inviting viewers on a journey of discovery. Her work reflects a deep engagement with the visual world, offering fresh perspectives through her mastery of the medium.

Connor Longo (Philadelphia, PA) explores power dynamics and identity through contemporary reinterpretations of historical paintings, exposing manipulations within visual culture. Using digital mediums and paint, he distorts notions of identity, employing circuses and casinos as metaphors for digital landscapes’ allure and profit-driven tactics. Longo’s artwork has been showcased across the Northeastern United States and internationally in Germany. He holds a BA from Temple University and an MFA from the University of Delaware, and currently teaches art in Philadelphia.

Jayne Struble (Wayne, PA) creates drawing-based art integrating sculpture and video, exploring tangible yet fragile representations of memories. Her site-specific works, influenced by experiences backpacking in locations like the Anza Borrego Desert, have been exhibited internationally. Struble, with an MFA from Columbus College of Art & Design, serves as Assistant Professor at Kutztown University, bringing her rich artistic background to her teaching and practice.

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