The Santa Monica College Pete & Susan Barrett Art Gallery will present “FONDAMENTA: Future Furniture Formed in a Collective Memory,” an exhibition of original works by renowned artists Peter Shire, Matt Connors, Peter Harkawik, and Matt Paweski.

The show will be open to the public through March 28, with an artists’ reception on Saturday, Feb. 21, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Shire, Paweski, and Harkawik will also hold a free panel discussion in the gallery on “Interpreting the Value(s) of Art & Design” at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 14.

“Peter Shire and I conceived of the exhibit through our friendship and mutual interest in design objects,” said Paweski. “The show presents a group of works that point to a future where function is blurred and things that seem to perform one task, actually do another.”

Shire describes the exhibit as a cross between a buddy movie and a visual portal into an extremely positive vision/version of the future.

“This vision is given form through the objects of life,” he said. “Life is such an un-definable quality that these things that reflect around us must be very rich. The fondamenta, the foundation embankment, the pediment, the quay, the departure point… which if you are coming from the opposite direction… is the point of arrival.”

Paweski, a Detroit native who grew up in Phoenix, is a sculptor and designer who now works in Los Angeles. His works — which have been exhibited in Los Angeles, New York, and London — are furniture-inspired pieces influenced by two-dimensional drawing and his background as a carpenter, cabinetmaker, and welder.

Shire is an award-winning L.A. artist whose colorful sculptures, furniture, and ceramics mix elements of art, architecture, and pop culture. His imaginative creations have been shown in the United States, Italy, France, Japan, and Poland, and his public sculptures include the colorful North Hollywood Gateway.

Connors is a New York artist whose abstract works draw from the history of painting, as well as the fields of language, music, and design. He has exhibited across the United States and Europe, and was awarded a 2012 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship.

Harkawik is a Los Angeles sculptor and photographer who uses architecture and industrial design as inspiration. His works, which explore themes of visual perception and intersubjective communication, have been exhibited in New York, Los Angeles, and Paris, where he was awarded an Artist Residency at Cité Internationale Universitaire des Paris in 2012.

SMC’s Pete & Susan Barrett Art Gallery is located at the SMC Performing Arts Center on Santa Monica Boulevard at 11th Street, Santa Monica. Due to construction in progress, enter from 11th Street. Exhibits, opening receptions and panel discussions are free.

Gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The gallery will be closed March 6 and March 19.
For more information, call (310) 434-3434.

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