Meyohas | 181 E 90th St.
The government-sponsored Home Owner’s Loan Corporation first began mapping and sorting American neighborhoods for mortgage lending in the 1930s. Areas were color-coded, and those with “inharmonious racial groups” were outlined in red. As homeownership in the US expanded, so did this government practice, which spread to private banks. It was termed redlining: to deny capital based on racial composition, rather than economic prospects; a visual metaphor for spatial discrimination. While eventually outlawed in 1968 by the Fair Housing Act, this practice shifted in pernicious ways, whether through predatory lending tactics, “retail redlining” or through even more subtle forms.
In The Transition of Power, Mildenberg presents two tableaus, which explore economic landscaping and the compounding moral effects of rezoning. In the main space, sculptural simulacra are meant to invoke the aesthetics of a retail bank. In the adjacent space, Mildenberg has planted a garden. Even the most generative and selfless acts are expressions of a larger driving force to select, enclose, and utterly dominate.
Jonathan Mildenberg was born in 1981 in the United States. His immersive installations reference both domestic and institutional spaces, resulting in uncanny juxtapositions which question the distinction between public and private space.
Mildenberg received a BFA from Boston’s Massachusetts College of Art in 2003 and an MFA in Sculpture from Yale University in 2015. He was the 2015 Nominee in Sculpture for the Toby Devan Lewis Fellowship and is a current fellow in Environmental Structures for the New York Foundation of the Arts. Recent exhibitions include Here, Tyrant Death / Look Backward, Idiot at Treasure Town, Wet Eyes at MEYOHAS, and Video Mixer at Green Gallery at Yale University.