Kate Spencer Stewart
22 January – 12 March 2022
Saturday January 22, 16–19h
La Maison de Rendez-Vous is pleased to announce Nature, a solo exhibition with the Los Angeles based painter Kate Spencer Stewart, organised by Park View / Paul Soto. The exhibition will open in Brussels at 23 Avenue Jef Lambeaux on Saturday January 22 with a public reception from 16–19h. The exhibition will run until Saturday February 26. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition in Belgium.
Last October, Kate Spencer Stewart came to Brussels and painted the works in her show Nature. The artist spent one month in a restored maison de maître across the ponds in Ixelles, where the escaped Egyptian Goose arrived in 1984.
Painting in series for the first time ever, she made Dreft 1, Dreft 2, Dreft 3, Dreft 4. Dreft is the dish soap stocked in Stewart’s Airbnb-cum-studio. It is also an obsolete Dutch word for “eagerness.” In 1933, Proctor and Gamble named the first synthetic laundry detergent “Dreft”. Later, it became “Fairy” in the UK, “Yes” in Sweden and Norway, and “Dawn” in the US. Words of nonspecific positivity and redemption, morphing across regions.
The Flemish fever dream, friend to the Dutch landscape. It is hard to be in Belgium and not feel a certain romance. But is it natural? Did Stewart notice the escaped parakeets on one of her walks in Forest: raucous clusters that break through the dark layer we seasonally refer to as the sky? This steadily growing, now massive population of bright green rose-ringed parakeets started out as a small group freed from Melipretpark in 1974. ParrotNet included them in “The Top 100 Worst Alien Species in Europe,” yet—like the ornamental geese—residents are attached to them, retaliating against the administration at the least mention of an eradication plan. I like them because they remind me of LA and being without history.
Alongside the series, a fifth painting bloomed into existence, Way. Between painting and sleep, Stewart observed the Worldwide Hum, that low frequency drone that we all recognize, but don’t usually accept. The current between inside and outside forces is what drives us; Wild.
Birds from elsewhere, arrived by accident, will continue to multiply here for as long as we do; landscapes are not unchanging. Stewart Birds from elsewhere, arrived by accident, will continue to multiply here for as long as we do; landscapes are not unchanging. Stewart makes paintings for being with, amidst this disorder. Companions for chaos. Her works feel like conduits, or even guides. They change the longer we stare, reflecting and absorbing light, recomposing rooms with their alien presence. Performing, somewhere outside the landscape.
text by Madeleine Paré
Kate Spencer Stewart lives and works in Los Angeles, and she received her MFA from UCLA. Recent solo exhibitions include Park View / Paul Soto, Los Angeles; and The Gallery @ Le Hangar Restaurant, Paris. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at Bureau, New York, where she will have a solo exhibition later this year; Neuer Kunstverein Wien, Austria; Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York; Misako & Rosen Gallery, Tokyo; Piktogram Gallery, Warsaw; and 356 Mission, Los Angeles, among others.