Tiger Strikes Asteroid’s dual-location correspondence

Arts / Article

Tiger Strikes Asteroid (TSA) is in the midst of a dialogue with their newest manifestation – a second gallery located in Bushwick, Brooklyn. TSA NY, as it has become known, was started after founding member Alex Paik made a move to New York, but continued corresponding with the original Philadelphia TSA space. Throughout March, the TSA NY members are exhibiting their work in Philadelphia as part of the pragmatically named show “Correspondence I: TSA NY.” Come August, the shoe will be on the other foot at the TSA Philadelphia artists exhibit at the Bushwick location.

Norm Paris, “Rock (Helmet).”

One standout piece from this first exchange is “Rock (Helmet)” by Norm Paris. Sitting off in the back corner on a shelf, it seems lonely, not only due to its apparent estrangement from the other art, but also due to its emptiness. The original object was an old child’s football helmet, as evidenced by the frayed strap, rusty fastener and overall shape. Paris covered the entire exterior in a chunky gypsum coating, making it seem more like a conglomerate rock or a slab of concrete, thus its primary title. As a helmet it is all but unusable, and it seems more like a fossil than a football accessory, lending to the idea that it is far detached from its original time, place and function.

Matt Phillips, "Manual."

Matt Phillips, “Manual.”

A mechanical-looking pastel painting by Matt Phillips hangs in the diagonally opposite corner. With a name like “Manual,” it either serves as a colorful reference manual for some fictional machine or merely a device that requires direct human input. Round gear-like sections vary in their rotation, their two-colored circles stopped forever in their last configuration. The belt that seemingly feeds through their spinning parts is also mirrored in the lower left corner in a smaller-scale, bright-green reproduction. This repetition seems instructional but also adds a secondary motif to the otherwise circular shapes that dominate the canvas.

Naomi Reis, "In A Grove."

Naomi Reis, “In A Grove.”

Naomi Reis provides some relief from these other hard-edged and industrial type objects with “In A Grove.” As one might imagine, the imagery Reis utilizes is based in the complex intertwining of natural forms. Immersing oneself in the middle of a forest is an easy way to commune with the earth and get lost in the weaving forms and interconnected systems of nature. Reis takes these notions and adds some splashes of unnatural color into her many, detailed layers, abstracting the experience before bringing it into the white-walled gallery. The piece looks more like a collage of paper cutouts than a painting and provides a small window into nature through the artist’s eyes.

Tai Yin Ho, "Boom Bang: Intra-contra-construction."

Tai Yin Ho, “Boom Bang: Intra-contra-construction.”

Another three-dimensional work is Tai Yin Ho’s “Boom Bang: Intra-contra-construction.” Here, a hunk of amber colored glass (think Jurassic Park without the DNA-laden mosquito) sits atop a pile of white printer paper. It would seem to be nothing more than a paperweight, until one observes its sharp, treacherous-looking edges. The top sheets of paper all have slashes and tears in them, presumably from the glass. While this shard has an intriguing overall shape and pleasant honeyed hue, it would prove to be a poor paperweight and potentially a hazard to one’s fingers as well.

This first correspondence between TSA NY and TSA Philadelphia will be on view at the Philly gallery space through March 31. At Tiger Strikes Asteroid in Brooklyn, “Correspondence II” will open on August 9.

Tiger Strikes Asteroid is located at 319 N. 11th Street, Philadelphia, on the second floor 2H); [email protected]philadelphia.tigerstrikesasteroid.com.