Gelah Penn: Confounding Parameters




I expand the language of drawing in sculptural space. In site-responsive installations, I deploy a variety of synthetic materials to invade, interpret and confound the architectural parameters of a given space. The works in my Polyglot drawing series foreground the same internal formal and conceptual contradictions: cohesion and fragmentation, balance and vertigo, minuet and jitterbug.

My great interest in film, particularly the uneasy territory of film noir, informs the work.





1, 2, 3. Situations, 2017 (large details)
Plastic tarps, foam rubber, lenticular plastic, Denril, plastic garbage bags, polyethylene
sheets, stainless steel Choreboys, black foil, mosquito netting, latex & silicone tubing,
mosquito netting, metal rods & staples, acrylic paint, rubber ball, upholstery & T-pins
Approximately 132 x 432 x 365 inches
Amelie A. Wallace Gallery, SUNY College at Old Westbury, Old Westbury, NY

4. The Big Red One, Two, 2017
Mosquito netting, foam rubber, foiled thermal insulation, Mylar, lenticular plastic,
plastic garbage bags, silicone tubing, monofilament, acrylic paint, Whiffle ball,T-pins
Approximately 104 x 130 x 65 inches
Studio view

5. Big Serial Polyglot Y (+1), 2016
Plastic garbage bags, lenticular plastic, digital prints, acrylic
paint, stainless steel choreboy, metal staples & eyelets on
Mylar & YUPO
As shown: 108 x 126 x 96 inches
6. Sliced Polyglot #6, 2016
Plastic garbage bags, metal
staples & eyelets on Mylar
72 x 40 x 1.5 inches

7. Sliced Polyglot #7, 2016-17
Plastic garbage bags, metal staples
& eyelets on lenticular plastic
96 x 32 x 2.5 inches
8. Sliced Polyglot #5, 2016
Plastic garbage bags,
metal staples & eyelets
on Mylar
56.5 x 31.5 x 3 inches

Gelah Penn's work has been exhibited widely. She is represented in the collections of the Columbus Museum (Columbus, GA), Weatherspoon Art Museum (Greensboro, NC), Brooklyn Museum Library (Brooklyn, NY) and Cleveland Institute of Art/Gund Library (Cleveland, OH). Exhibitions have been reviewed Art in America, The New York Times,, The Brooklyn Rail and a feature in Sculpture Magazine. Penn received a Tree of Life Individual Artist Grant and fellowships from the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation, Yaddo and the MacDowell Colony. The artist lives and works in New York City.