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A behind the scenes look of the
conceptual artist's solo show SHADOWLAND



The first Saturday of Upstate Art Weekend finds me immersed in an unexpected encounter with inverted artworks, accompanied by an enchanting fusion of Gregorian chants and Jimi Hendrix-inspired melodies. It's a mesmerizing experience that feels like falling into a trance. But the reality is, I'm attending artist Margaret Innerhofer's solo exhibition, "SHADOWLAND," at the Ethan Cohen Gallery within The Kube Art Center in Beacon, NY. This show, as described by the renowned gallery, showcases "photo-based prints and framed canvases that explore the transitional spaces between spiritual and psychological borderlands." Here, I get a chance to understand the artist's journey from her Tyrolean mountain childhood to her philosophical artistry in Beacon.

Margaret Innerhofer's upbringing is a tale of immersion in nature's idyllic beauty and harmonious sounds. Born and raised amidst the Tyrolean Alps in Italy, her childhood was a blend of mountain climbs, horseback riding, yodeling, musical pursuits, and even singing Gregorian chants within
a strict convent boarding school. This connection with nature and fascination with the Apache Indian lifestyle, particularly their harmonious coexistence with the environment, laid the foundation for her artistic journey.

Moving on to Milan for her Architectural and Fine Art studies marked a turning point in Innerhofer's artistic evolution. The city's dynamic art scene and exposure to conceptual and minimalist concepts from the Arte Povera Movement ignited her passion for contemporary art. Engaging with fellow artists and frequenting galleries and museums across Italy and Europe broadened her artistic horizons. Photography, especially the works of Dada and Surrealist artists like Man Ray and Andre Breton, captivated her imagination and further fueled her artistic interests.



Innerhofer's solo exhibition, "SHADOWLAND," consists of three distinct series: Sandmen, Heavy Metal, and Deconstr-Activist. These series delve into the intricate realms of the subconscious, drawing inspiration from scientific research and psychological explorations. The exhibition's description speaks of large-scale meditative compositions printed in color with surreal black and white reflections, inviting viewers into alternate psychological and temporal dimensions.

One of the threads running through "SHADOWLAND" is the exploration of the subconscious. Innerhofer is intrigued by Carl Jung's ideas on collective consciousness and aims to unravel the enigma of subconscious control. Scientific research revealing that 80% of human behavior is influenced by the subconscious, especially during formative years, plays a significant role in shaping the artworks' symbolism. The delicate relationship between humanity and nature is another theme highlighted, reminding viewers of our interconnectedness with the environment.

The unique aspect of Innerhofer's exhibition lies in the orientation of her artworks. Viewers can choose to hang them in either vertical orientation, showcasing the color side or the black-and-white 'Shadow image.' This choice symbolizes the conscious versus subconscious perspective. The color

side portrays conscious perception, while the 'Shadow image' delves into hidden complexities that shape our lives. This choice offers viewers a chance to question their reality and engage in introspection.

In the Deconstr-Activist series, Innerhofer draws from architectural movements to explore shadows, volumes, and the interplay of light and darkness. The Heavy Metal series captures the collision between outdated American vintage cars and nature, inviting reflection on the transient nature of material possessions. Finally, the Sandmen series employs beachscapes to symbolize the duality of human existence—the conscious experience above the surface and the subconscious depths below.



Margaret Innerhofer's "SHADOWLAND" exhibition goes beyond aesthetics. It prompts introspection, challenges perceptions, and invites viewers to consider the complexities of human existence. The fusion of visual art with sound, as seen in the 'Shadowland' composition she crafted for the show, creates a multi-dimensional experience that resonates on a deeper level. As Innerhofer's artwork delves into the subconscious and explores the environment, it serves as a thought-provoking journey through the landscapes of the mind and beyond.

With a beach vacation in Italy on the horizon, Margaret Innerhofer's journey continues to evolve. Her introspective artistry continues to captivate, offering viewers a chance to explore the uncharted territories of their own subconscious minds. In this world of shadows and reflections, Innerhofer invites us all to embark on a journey of self-discovery and contemplation, much like the dreamy landscapes that grace her canvases.


Margaret Innerhofer: SHADOWLAND Ethan Cohen Gallery at the KuBe Art Center 211 Fishkill Ave, Beacon, NY 12508
Now on view until October 1st, 2023

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