Installation view of Hooverville Torqued Ellipse, 2012
Installation view of Dark Day, Abigail Deville installing Haarlem Tower of Babel for FORE at the Studio Museum in Harlem

For Abigail Deville, nothing is garbage. Trash heaps, dumpsters, and other sites of disposal are the primary points of departure for the Bronx-based artist, who constructs large scale post-apocalyptic wonderlands from locally sourced materials. During our visit to the Studio Museum in Harlem, where she is currently an Artist-in-Residence, Deville spoke to us about finding the sublime in the disposed. Her process is research intensive with an archaeological sensibility. For each piece, Deville draws connections to her immediate environment by walking through communities and gathering discarded objects from just about anywhere, from garbage cans to street corners. Often though, the origins of these materials are as close to home as her grandmother’s living room. Lumber, shards of glass, mattresses, and family heirlooms are hammered together to create immersive landscapes that appear at once local and cosmic. Check out Deville’s work in GUTS at Abrons Arts Center, on view until December 31st.

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