Michelle Marcuse, Diagram of Disorder, 2021. Drawing on yupo, 20 x 26 inches.
Marcuse says of her work, "In 2010, my partner and I moved into a house stripped practically to its bare brick and bones. We were preparing to renovate our home while living there. The demolition process uncovered many curiosities, foremost in my mind was the silver-backed wall insulation, ‘scarred’ from the pressure of old house wood and wires. These findings were the inspiration for a series of drawings called Carrying the Dreamer which pertained to loosely rendered remembrances from colonial South Africa where I grew up. Our garden there was overgrown and full of mystery for a child where my siblings and I played unsupervised at the base of Table Mountain. However, the ever presence of apartheid policies loomed large in the background. Even in the midst of such youthful bliss, I intuited the world around me as being full of angst and sorrow. Through this series [2010-2014], I revisited aspects of my childhood and came to grips with a future that resembles a post-apocalypse universe—a floating world that belies gravitational pull, with objects, sky, clouds, partially architectural rendered structures and natural growth no longer anchored. In these silver drawings, I visit my dream worlds in an attempt to navigate through the perception of the utopian reality, gleaned in my youth, but always counterbalanced with the emotional awareness of its dystopia."
Michelle Marcuse is Co-Director of HOUSEGallery, an exhibition space in Fishtown. Receiving a B.Des at Shenkar College, Israel , she continued to Michaelis School of Art [University of Cape Town 1983] and completed her BFA at Tyler School of Art, Phila., PA . She was invited to exhibit with The Haitian Cultural Arts Alliance, Miami, FL [2015[, BLAM Projects Brooklyn, NY , and Taller Boricua, NYC . She was a recipient of the Fleisher Art Memorial Wind Challenge exhibition . Her work is in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, amongst others. In 2017 she was a Finalist in CFEVA’s Visual Artist Fellowship. In 2018, she exhibited at the DORAL Contemporary within a group exhibition. In 2019, she created a site specific installation at EYIntuitive Design [Manayunk], organized by Mt. Airy Contemporary, PHL. This year she had a solo exhibition at the List Gallery, Swarthmore College which will later travel to the AVA Gallery in Cape Town, SA, .