The Crit Lab Peekskill: Dennis Fox Residency Exhibition
Lauren Bradshaw and Theo Trotter
November 12 - 30, 2022
Join us at MAPSpace for an exhibition of residency artists Lauren Bradshaw and Theo Trotter, awardees of our first Crit Lab Peekskill Dennis Fox Residency, summer 2022.
Reception with the artists: Saturday November 12, 3-6pm.
open by appointment all other times.
Zoom Artist Talk
Wednesday November 16, 6:30pm
Watch the recording at the Crit Lab YouTube Channel.
Download the PDF catalog
Purchase the hard copy Catalog.
MAPSpace is located at
6 North Pearl Street, 4th floor
Port Chester, NY 10573
The gallery is one block from the Metro-North train station.
Take the Stamford local train to Port Chester.
We are so pleased to announce an exhibition of The Crit Lab's second residency program, Crit Lab Peekskill with the first residents - Theo Trotter and Lauren Bradshaw!
The Crit Lab presents our first residents, Lauren Bradshaw and Theo Trotter. Lauren and Theo spent a productive six weeks living, working, and collaborating in the Crit Lab Peekskill Loft. The exhibition and catalog present a selection of individual and collaborative works from the artists.
At The Crit Lab we believe artists can and should share resources to build better ecosystems. In this spirit, and in honor of our dear friend Dennis Fox (1955-2019), we have created this live/work summer residency.
The Crit Lab Peekskill Loft was owned originally by our dear friend Dennis Fox, who passed away from Leukemia in 2019. Dennis was a talented gilder, gifted restorer of paintings and frames, a master craftsman who loved art and artists. Since Dennis’s untimely death, the loft has been managed and owned by Crit Lab founder Patricia Miranda. The Crit Lab is currently run out of this space. Artists in the Dennis Fox Residency are invited to spend a four to six weeks living and working in the gorgeous Peekskill live/work loft space, at no cost to the artists. The excitement of collaboration is a fundamental aspect of the Residency.
The work of Lauren Bradshaw and Theo Trotter explores material intimacy in objects of defiant vulnerability. The visibility of fracture, wound, and bodily transformation is both discomfiting and beautiful, familiar forms rendered strange, new identities knit together with a confrontational delicacy. These artists bring a fragile strength to bodily references, tangled softness of lace pierced with a sharp pin, shriveled sinew of latex, bloodied bandages countered by nail polish, panty hose and makeup. The trappings of childish femininity are repurposed into mutable bodies in the act of formation, continually in motion, turning away from, turning towards, turning into, perpetually in the act of becoming. In both their collaborative and individual works, Bradshaw and Trotter place unfinish, openness, and a tactile grisly beauty as an explicit priority, one of desire and repulsion, of flayed emotion and skin that challenges and seduces. Like a birth in process, hard to look at and hard to look away from, these objects are unapologetic in their abject beauty and rebellious tenderness.
See more info about the residents at the Crit Lab Residency page- and follow them on instagram at @theotrotter @laurenbradshawart @thecritlab #critlabpeekskill
My primary aim for this residency is to continue my investigation into the relationships between ephemerality, materiality, and the body, utilizing materials that retain an inherent vulnerability due to their softness such as latex, fibers, and textiles. I plan to later combine these soft works with past and/or future ceramic works in order to accentuate the tension between bodily dichotomies. It is my hope that many of these works will be included in an upcoming solo and three-person exhibition that I will be involved with in the near future. I am also eager to collaborate with Theo Trotter as our work both exists at the intersection of corporeality and materiality and has significant overlap in the use of materials, processes, and conceptual content.
Although these sculptures are not directly anthropomorphic, the corporeality of materials is accentuated in rendering the entropic state of our ephemeral bodies. We often avoid thoughts concerning the anatomical systems that function beneath our skin as they reveal our mortality to be tangible. Clay becomes a record of physical process due to its plasticity, which captures moments beyond bodily transience. It is initially manipulated as a soft material, but once fired it gains permanence and loses the ongoing malleability of softness. Soft sculpture challenges the stability and structure typically associated with sculpture due to its elasticity and innate amorphousness. The vulnerability of this formlessness reflects the fragility of our bodies and serves as an interplay between fluctuating levels of material impermanence. Latex and fibers have been utilized in conjunction with ceramic to reveal the tension between dichotomies such as hard versus soft or internal versus external. In response to the abjection of mortality, these works can also be viewed through the lens of existentialism and absurdity, leading to a revolt against meaninglessness. They may reference death and decay, but retain a delicate vulnerability that ultimately suggests the resilience of their existence.
Lauren Bradshaw earned her BA in Studio Art at the University of North Georgia in 2019 and her MFA in Ceramics at Clemson University in 2021. She has been included in several group exhibitions primarily throughout the Southeast. She was recently included in the HEXENTEXTE publication entitled “Dream House: A Collaborative Zine in Honor of the 50th Anniversary of Womanhouse” and spoke at the online symposium, “Dismantling the Body: Possibilities and Limitations in Art Making”, organized by the University of Washington Graduate Students of Art History (GSAH). Her work can be seen at the current 35th Annual “Materials Hard + Soft” International Contemporary Craft Competition and Exhibition and she will have a solo exhibition in October at the Roy C. Moore Gallery on the University of North Georgia Gainesville campus.
A driving motivation behind this residency is the creation of collaborative work. We plan to explore shared themes concerning the body and abjection, as well as the many material affinities between our practices. Solo work that I plan to produce includes a new body of work engaging with the concept of lace as a second skin, as well as the theme of trans childhood, and dichotomies around the “real” vs “artificial.” In this work, I will be utilizing materials such as textiles, latex, medical supplies, and hair. Lastly, I am preparing a performance for this year’s Art in Odd Places, scheduled to take place September 23-25 this year. This performance is titled “Emergence,” and involves sewing over every scar on my body, whether surgical, accidental, or self-inflicted, to represent gender transition as a continuous process of creating the self.
My work references the trans body as a palimpsest, through the marks of transformation and trauma that manifest on it. It deals with the idea of transformation as a necessary and transcendent, but simultaneously painful experience by utilizing the tension between beautiful and disgusting visual elements. This conflict between attraction and repulsion also represents injury and healing. I address visceral bodily experiences at the point where language begins to fail, dealing with, among other things, physical harm to the body, and the injury of forced femininity. I utilize a variety of different media including textiles and latex. What many of my materials have in common is a pliability and fragility that mimics the flesh. I am drawn to other materials, such as lace, because of the closeness and intimacy to the skin that they evoke. Touch is an essential part of my process, and sometimes remains visible in the work as imprints in the materials. I am always in conversation with the materials, at once injuring or harming them, and allowing their nature to shape the trajectory of my work.
Theo Trotter is an artist whose investigates themes around trans experience, memory, and the body. He works with a range of materials including textiles, paper, and latex. He has participated in residencies including most recently the School of Visual Arts summer residency. His work has been included in exhibitions in New York City, where he is currently based, and across the Northeast. He received a BA in Studio Arts from Bard College in 2019.