Miami Design District on Autumn Casey’s “AGALMA”

AUTUMN_HELLBATHTUB

Words by Dejha Carrington

Remember that time when Autumn Casey walked through Art Basel screaming at the top of her lungs?  That was December 2012, and from whatever bottlenecked, manufactured experiences came from visiting Miami’s mammoth art fairs during peek hours, Casey channeled them perfectly.  She later explained to HuffingtonPost, “The actual idea came from the pressures of feeling like you have to do something for Basel – like now is your time because the whole art world is going to be [in Miami].  So I thought, what if I just scream? Like a release of this frustration from the pressure.”

On view through October 24 at PRIMARY, “Agalma,” to the viewer, feels like an extension of Casey’s voice.  The exhibit offers traces of the artist’s life, and morsels of goodness mostly through mixed media and installation work.  According to the press release, Casey “creates a sentimental haunt of personal and local history.  One that suggests the more personal we get, the more universally we appeal.”  This proposition – not incidentally viewed as fundamental to the laws of physical attraction – comes alive in the artist’s small decisions for the show.

A green lawn chair, for one, has renewed purpose in “Agalma” – an ancient Greek term that refers to an offering, a token of beauty, for the Gods.  Where form meets function, this chair also serves to anchor light on a painting that Casey slashed into strips and reassembled into a beautiful Frankenstein.

Pieces such as Metamorphous appear as a token of familiarity for PRIMARY’s frequent flyers: a nod to the gallery’s elaborate chandelier unveiled the previous year.  There’s something brutal about suspending knives from string.

Part organic, part nostalgic and also lots of fun, Casey’s investigation of the relationship between people and objects in “Agalma” asks viewers to dig a little deeper for the psychological and experiential jewels that connect us. Visit PRIMARY at 151 NE 7th Street in Downtown Miami.

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