James Harris Gallery is pleased to present our first solo exhibition by Seattle artist Sol Hashemi. The show will include both sculpture and photography. Using rocks as the conceptual framework for the show Hashemi explores the idea of the “natural” environment and what it personifies. He questions the viewer to reconsider the preconceived ideas of his/her surrounding and what may be “natural” to them. Is the “natural environment” for some the urban context where cars, apartments, fast food, trash, and other manmade objects become the core parameters? Or does a rural or wilderness context take precedence in framing ones conception? As with the title ROCK SHOW, the works in this exhibition become entangled with defining “natural” by bringing these two seemingly disparate worlds together.
Although the majority of the objects on display are rocks, the artist has transformed them by physically altering them, adding elements or letting its original form evolve/devolve on its own. In one large scale photograph, a solitary rock floats on a white background; the image begins to shift away from the original context to read like an isolated landscape or island. In another work, the artist has drilled a cup holder in which a can of soda has been placed. Hashemi’s work underlines the potential of a subject matter’s ability to blur meaning and actively engage the spectator in the principal role of how an artwork functions. A rock, an ordinary common object, in the artist’s hands transcends into an awareness of conventions of seeing beyond the world around us.
Sol Hashemi was born in 1987 in Vancouver, Washington. He currently lives and works in Seattle. He received his BFA from the University of Washington where he received Mary Gates Research Scholar Seventh Annual Summer Institute in the Arts and Humanities and Matt J. Jarvis Travel Award for Photography. He has shown at Greg Kucera Gallery, 4 Culture, and Punch Gallery in Seattle. He participated in group shows in Baltimore, Los Angeles and Vancouver, Canada.