Asia Ward’s recent wall sculptures are kind of like those bad ass, unionized hookers from the film Sin City: devastatingly sexy, but get too close, and they’ll cut ya.
No really, they will: Ward works with razor thin bands of aluminum flashing, bending and knotting them into swooping, voluptuous tangles that, should you actually try to grab one, might just leave you with a finger nub and a nasty blood spurt. The first one we ever saw in person was Ward’s excellent “Platinum Black.” There it was, blooming on the gallery wall like a death flower. Sinister. Vampy. And possessed of so many curves you could deem it “erotic” without sounding like some hopelessly unfashionable Freudian. (We did.)
Anyway, Ward calls these creations “landscapes.” And, sure enough, “Platinum Black” (right) is meant to evoke a cloud. Other sculptures nod to the sky, to marshland, to rivers. For Ward, who has Native American ancestry, it’s a way to commune with the land in a way that is both ancient/elemental and aggressively modern. She claims to be exhuming historical narratives; each piece is inspired by an event that has taken place around the Mississippi River valley, Fort Snelling, the Saint Croix River, and the caves and tunnels that make up the sewer and drainage systems of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
“If you’re into women who weld, you’ll probably like the show,” Ward told us recently.
Indeed we are. Sounds pretty hot.
“Silverfish: Asia Ward and Amy Toscani”
Opening reception Saturday, July 7
1400 Van Buren St. NE, Mpls.