Inspired by antiwar posters, activist posters, Occupy Wall Street protest signs, and hand-scrawled homes-for-sale signs wired to street corner poles, Michael Loveland’s new body of work examines the power of the individual’s voice in society.
Working from mass-produced, found graphics such as pin-up girls and rock posters, Loveland obliterates all but the mouth, the vehicle of the voice, through processes of masking and erasure. The resulting expanses of open space surrounding the figures initiate a dialogue between them – singing turns to screaming, a simple smile becomes overtly erotic.
Evoking the figure, these works inform the more minimal sculptures in the exhibition, which find roots in issues regarding false securities, foreclosure and abandonment. Like his early works that primarily consisted of groupings of color, like textures and combinations with unlike materials, the new sculptures focus on unaltered everyday objects, questioning viability and value through displacement. For example, the North West Utopia series derived from photographs of an abandoned home across the street from the artist’s studio, from which he collected objects for several sculptures, or Berlin Moments, a series of small sculptures that grew from objects and posters collected during walks around that city.
Loveland is a Miami-based artist who graduated from the New World School of the Arts. He subsequently earned his BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and also studied in New York before returning to Miami. He participates in exhibitions and art fairs in the United States, as well as abroad. His artwork is included in several private and museum collections.