"seamlessness": Works by Jenny Kemp and Cory Emma Siegler at Turley Gallery | Visual Art | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine

The world turns, summer arrives again, the days grow long, and the regional art scene continues to thrive with its seasonal charm. Memorial Day into June is always a beautiful blur, and it took weeks to get myself to Turley Gallery to see the exhibition closing July 7, Jenny Kemp and Cory Emma Siegler's "seamlessness." This review is late to the game, however, the terrific-ness of "seamlessness" must be expressed since the pairing of these two outstanding artists is an absolute joy to behold, and there is still one weekend left to experience it.

"seamlessness": Works by Jenny Kemp and Cory Emma Siegler at Turley Gallery
OVOOVOOVOOVO, Cory Emma Siegler, repurposed scraps, clothing and other fabrics, cotton batting, cotton thread, 2024.

Beautifully installed in the new Turley Gallery space on Warren Street in Hudson, artworks by Kemp and Siegler take turns taking the spotlight. Where Kemp’s fluid style flows in and around us through her various configurations, Siegler’s bright, bold quilt-patterned works are playfully reminiscent of physical games writ large. The various sections of this show highlight a continuous conversation and harmonious dance between Kemp’s luscious, lucid, mid-century-modern-esque painterly language and Siegler’s slightly nostalgic, precise, fabric-as-graphic textile practice.

With Kemp (whose work appeared on the cover of Chronogram in 2019), we are pulled into a swirling world of graceful connection points that invite us to instinctively flow through the entirety of every piece, and the effect is mesmerizing. Trappings (2024), for example, is a graphically stoic square shape that is also organic in its mask-like, figure-like composition and the perceived anus at the bottom of this lovely anthropomorphic creature naturally brings our eyes to the hand-like gestures at the top of the piece, while two somber eyes peek at us in their provocative lushness. The curious continuum-boundary juxtaposition of Kemp’s technique is further demonstrated in acrylic on linen works such as Rolls (2024), a tightly patterned painting that indeed appears to be rolling all over itself in a delightful cascade of subdued orange tones, and A Vibe (2021), a gorgeously mystical painting of two opposing languid breast-like shapes that meet in the middle as vibrational circles extend outward from their almost-touching position. The side-effect of Kemp’s exhilarating style is a desire to see her painterly environs expand and overlap further still, to engulf the entire wall, to reach out into the world and cover everything in its groovy sumptuousness.

"seamlessness": Works by Jenny Kemp and Cory Emma Siegler at Turley Gallery
A Vibe, Jenny Kemp, acrylic on linen-wrapped panel, 2021.

With Siegler, her incredible command of fabric to create exquisite wall compositions is unrivaled and inspires us to consider the significance of cloth as both a vital aspect of our lived experience as well as an evident medium for creative explorations. The precise character of her fabric-as-art practice provides a remarkable aesthetic reverberation in relation to Kemp, and we feel that Siegler could go on and on with endless combinations of bold patterned prettiness (to be clear, "pretty" as a description of power). Among her masterpiece works in this show, OVOOVOOVOOVO (2024) is total perfection and poise. Created from repurposed scraps, clothing fabrics, cotton batting, and cotton thread, this work literally sings in its flawless harmoniousness, as if Mozart himself had arranged the thread through her hands. With ZZZUSSS (2023), the empty spaces in-between Siegler’s flowing patterns of rippling colors seems to go upward and downward simultaneously, and the delightful tremor of the work titled (((O)))(((O))) (2022) is fluid field of autumnal energy both curvy and controlled, a kind of unabashed boogie with boundaries.

"seamlessness": Works by Jenny Kemp and Cory Emma Siegler at Turley Gallery
ZZZUSSS, Cory Emma Siegler, repurposed scraps, clothing and other fabrics, cotton batting, cotton thread, 2023

The seamlessness of the seams between Kemp and Siegler is a cornucopia of symbiotic (and symbolic) energies that engage and uplift. Although an exhibition of physical works, the anima of this show can be described in a metaphorically gustatory manner: "seamlessness" is delicious, sensual, and pleasing to the eyeballs, mind, and heart alike.

Taliesin Thomas

Taliesin Thomas, PhD, is a writer, lecturer, and artist-philosopher based in Troy, NY.
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