Sophia Narrett: Certain Magic at BRIC House


BRIC House | Downtown Brooklyn

Sophia Narrett: Certain Magic brings a unique look into feminist art in the Project Room of BRIC House, with an opening reception on May 11, 2018, from 7-9pm.

Sophia Narrett creates complex embroideries that express the power of intimacy and desire in the digital age. By casting figures sourced from the Internet into carefully embroidered scenes, she responds to a world of immediate, often treacherous media with an idiosyncratic fantasy. Through undulating embroidered surfaces, and edges that dissolve into loose threads or sculptural flora, Certain Magic tells a disconcerting narrative of modern longing that layers the surreal with the mundane. In the exhibition, chemistry, romance, and perhaps delusion, transform backyards and living rooms into sites for magic and escapism.

Narrett’s vignettes include exhibitionism, voyeurism, flirtation and play. Here, romance is transcendent, an escape from tragedy, isolation, and even boredom. Yet it is also tied to those moments when excitement borders on toxicity, or play bleeds into manipulation, and when the inherent danger of power exchange (real or imagined) comes to light.

While her pieces exceed the traditional parameters of embroidery, the historical associations of the medium are crucial to its content. In a recent New York Times Style Magazine article Narrett said, “Embroidery and its implicit history help specify the tone of my stories, one characterized by obsession, desire and both the freedoms and restraints of femininity.”

Narrett’s dreamlike visions can strike a humorous note—a nude woman plays on a tire in a backyard or a t-shirt proclaims “See You in Hell.” The decadence escalates in her largest work to date, Right Before. A woman perches on man’s shoulder as they descend a spiral staircase towards a bacchanalia. Various figures, ranging from menacing to mischievous, are choreographed throughout the work to build a spatially unfolding story of indulgence and connection. Despite elements of the chaotic and the fantastic, the work remains sincere, a quality built through the composition and the slow, tactile nature of embroidery.

Sophia Narrett is a 2017-18 recipient of the ArtFP, an open call for Brooklyn-based visual artists to exhibit their work at BRIC House. This opportunity includes assistance with development time, installation, marketing, and an exhibition opening reception. The exhibition will be on display from May 12- June 17, 2018.

BRIC Project Room exhibitions highlight solo projects by emerging artists whose work encompasses a rich range of themes and media. The Project Room at BRIC House is located at 647 Fulton Street (enter on Rockwell Place) in Downtown Brooklyn. The Project Room at BRIC House is open Tues.–Sat., 10am-6pm; Sun., 12-6pm; and closed Mondays.

See You In Hell, Sophia Narrett


About Sophia Narrett

Narrett’s work was part of the Materials Cultures exhibition at BRIC in fall 2016. She is a 2018 recipient of a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. Her work is currently a part of NSFW: Female Gaze at the Museum of Sex, NY and Handmade: Women Reshaping Contemporary Art at the Westport Arts Center, Westport, CT. Her work has also been shown at Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton, NJ; Lux Art Institute, Encinitas, CA; Museum Rijswijk, Holland; 315 Gallery, Brooklyn; and Freight + Volume, SPRING/BREAK Art Show, and Nancy Margolis Gallery, all in NY. Her past residencies include those at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, ME; the Museum of Arts and Design, NY; and the Lux Art Institute, Encinitas, CA. She holds a BA in Visual Arts from Brown University and a MFA in Painting from the Rhode Island School of Design, both in Providence, RI. Narrett’s work was recently highlighted in a T: The New York Times Style Magazine article, “Some of the Most Provocative Political Art is Made With Fibers,” by Leslie Camhi on March 14, 2018.

About BRIC

BRIC is the leading presenter of free cultural programming in Brooklyn, and one of the largest in New York City. The organization presents and incubates work by artists and media-makers that reflects the diversity of New York. BRIC programs reach hundreds of thousands of people each year.

BRIC’s main venue, BRIC House, offers a public media center, a major contemporary art exhibition space, two performance spaces, a glass-walled TV studio and artist work spaces.

Some of BRIC’s most acclaimed programs include the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival in Prospect Park; groundbreaking media initiatives, including BRIC TV, BRIC Radio, and Brooklyn Free Speech; and renowned contemporary art exhibitions. BRIC also offers education and community-building programs at BRIC House and throughout Brooklyn.

In addition to making cultural programming genuinely accessible, BRIC is dedicated to providing substantial support to artists and media makers in their efforts to develop work and reach new audiences. BRIC is unusual in both presenting exceptional cultural experiences and nurturing individual expression. This dual commitment enables BRIC to most effectively reflect New York City’s innate cultural richness and diversity.