Recently, &gallery in Miami presented Tender, VCS student Maggie Dunlap’s first solo exhibition. Near the end of its run, critic Monica Uszerowicz covered the show in a substantial and thoughtful illustrated review in Hyperallergic. Here’s a brief quote from the beginning of the review:
&gallery is a small space that, if crowded, requires lots of shuffling and peering over shoulders. If it is empty, a visitor could view a show in its entirety from the entrance. This is not to say that it’s underwhelming, but rather compact, and that is how Maggie Dunlap’s work ought to be seen: however disparate her mediums, they speak to each other in a language rooted in femininity and feminism, one that traces young women’s rites of passage into adulthood, which are unequivocally horrifying but often beautiful. In Dunlap’s first solo show, Tender, each piece faces another, sharing their stories.
A photograph positioned near the door depicts a Ouija board mid-séance, surrounded by legs in patterned tights and bejeweled hands. “A group of young women coming together, this sort of camaraderie, can be seen as dangerous or scary,” said Dunlap, when I asked her about this image. Witchcraft is inescapably connected to women, and one of the occult signifiers attached to the mythically transformative period of adolescence — it’s an easy trope, the teen witch, but it is not without its particular history.