Breath in the Void, a solo exhibition by Clive Moloney.
Gallery VERY, Boston MA
Through an economy of materials, Moloney creates an environment which aims to bring the viewer into a contemplative awareness of one’s self. Acting as both mirror and abyss, Moloney’s work is uncanny in its ability to simultaneously hold and transport the viewer.
The preeminent piece of the show is “Turning”, a mysterious whirlpool of silvery liquid that perpetually churns in a transparent basin. As one’s attention is pulled into the vortex, we are transfixed by the phenomenon as one might be to flames in a campfire. In “Pausing”, a pristine white mold of the artist’s body stands as a witness to the environment. It is equal parts self-portrait and sarcophagus, a complete form and an empty shell. Again, we are drawn into the work and held there, the self both reflected by and transferred into the emptiness.
The voids throughout Moloney’s work also introduce an element of the unknown. In “Sitting”, a purplish, otherworldly glow emanates from a conical form attached to the wall. Seeming to ascend from the light, a reflective shape culminates in a large circle that appears to contain the makings of a storm. The work at once entrances and mystifies, funneling one’s attention downward to the unseen source of light while contrasting with the stark physicality of the accompanying form.
Suspended above the other works, “Rising” floats, sun-like, overhead. The self-lit orb suggests the celestial but more broadly acts as a placeholder under which the works can perform in context. Rather than transport the viewer outside of one’s self, “Rising” situates us in the materiality of the now.
Breath in the Void circulates notions of what it means to be present in time and space. Powerful and serene, Moloney’s work opens a portal to imagining the limitless depths of our existence.
Breath in the Void
May 4-June 14, 2019