MFA Sculpture Students Launch Virtual Gallery, Perennial Space

To make up for the loss of in-person exhibitions during the pandemic, students from the Sculpture department have launched a virtual gallery to experiment with new methods of collaboration and artmaking. Founded by Sculpture students who will be graduating in 2021, Perennial Space released their first exhibition in June, titled Self-portraits that actually aren't portraits at all, but are still portraits of ourselves nonetheless. Converting homes into studio spaces, Self-portraits utilizes foam, glass receptacles, soap, glitter, blinds, and backyards as mediums to meditate on selfhood. 

The second and third shows, which added works from recent alums, were both released in July. Turn on Red reflects on spaces that can activate transformation and progress—parking lots, roads, neighborhood parks, and alleyways, among others—while The First 30 Seconds in the Morning Before You Remember Who You Are examines the psychological effects of defamiliarizing the familiar, such as the Internet, time and spatial dimension, history, and home. "We wanted to reimagine the gallery as a set of disparate sites (wherever we were living at the time) rather than as the single unitary space a gallery typically is," said student Conrad Cheung. "I think it’s precisely because the gallery is a low-stakes and self-organized endeavor that we feel freer to experiment and to try out new work, much of which is responsive to the new crisis conditions."