Pillbox

The Frame Gallery: A Kilo of Green

The Frame Gallery, on the corner of Margaret Morrison and Forbes Avenue, opened its Kilo of Green showing on Thursday, Oct. 31. The gallery featured artists including Paola Mathus, Miranda Miller, and Jenn Gooch.

The first painting that I stumbled across was Mathus’s “What’s Not Lost in the River, 2018.” By combining different mediums, Mathus was able to flawlessly overlay two very different scenes on one canvas. Mathus brought forth gripping images that distinguished themselves against the other white-textured foreground. This imagery of two foregrounds coexisting in this painting brings forth a reflection of the duality of the sacrifices we make, the ways that our identities intersect, and the journeys that we undertake because of those sacrifices and intersections.

Miranda Miller’s “Allohmon yellow,” was a three-hour performance where Miller was enclosed in a three-walled room of translucent plastic, and used their body to coat the room in a version of Pittsburgh’s proprietary paint color, Allohmon yellow. After they covered the room, they divided the wall that separated them from the audience. The performer took up space in the room by lying still in a dominant seated position for two hours while the audience viewed them. The picture itself is of a sectioned-off part of the room after the performance had finished, and the artist was seated. The picture includes the tub of paint, a section of the performer’s outstretched legs, and a portion of the room. The room is not just covered in paint, but drenched with it, almost drowning in it. The yellow of Pittsburgh is painted on everything we do here. All the actions we take, good or bad, are covered in Allohmon yellow, drowning in the pigment. Miller describes the piece as a golden triangle, a marking of territory, a reclamation.

Coco Allred’s “Magnificent Retro Lounger, 2017” was situated openly in the center of the room. The uneven texture was reminiscent of a piece of furniture, long overused and tired, that would surely crumble if any person tried to use it. The shade of the couch was a sickly green, mirroring its decaying state. It’s clear that at one point this couch could have been beautiful, a staple in the home of a proud owner, but now as it decays, it has become wretched and tired. Perhaps, it is simply well-loved and well-used, a metaphor for the things that we appreciate and cherish. Everything that is material, everything that we can feel will decay at some point. We can dread that moment, we can try and hide from it, but our possessions will expire, turn lumpy, uneven, and maybe even a sickly green color. What was once an integral part of our home is now tucked away in a corner, in the attic, or maybe in storage, but to see this lounger stunningly placed in the middle of the room, unabashedly and unashamedly, reminds us that we should not be afraid of our things as they decay. Decay deserves to be the centerpiece. Decay is beautiful.

Paola Mathus is a former Visual Editor at The Tartan.