Exhibition: Reflection Pools: Thumbnail

Uprise Art is pleased to present Reflection Pools, a new project by Chicago-based artist Chad Kouri at Chinatown Soup. Visitors are invited to enter the gallery space, sit down, and spend long-form time with the work as an exercise in meditation and mindfulness. Kouri’s practice centers the importance of making time for introspection, enabling more energy for mutual aid and collective community care. With roots in ancient Persian gardens, the reflecting pool is an architectural design feature used in parks and memorial sites. These undisturbed waters create a literal and metaphorical moment for reflection by mirroring the onlooker’s image and offering a serene opportunity for pause. Likewise, the central metallic silver circle in Kouri’s paintings encourages the experience of deep-looking that prioritizes the viewer’s perspective. As the viewer’s relation to the painting changes, different features of the room around it are reflected, leading to an infinitely changing viewing experience. In a similar context, the circle was used in prehistoric petroglyphs to symbolize a portal to a spiritual realm. Modern interpretations view the circle as a symbol of perfection, wholeness, cycles, and the infinite; it is at once the sun, the moon, a clock, a compass, the wheel, and a vanity mirror. With so many associations both past and present, the reflective circle is the ideal symbol to activate the mind in an exploration of personal rumination. Accompanying audio pieces enhance the immersive quality of the work, creating an atmospheric and healing space. The contemplative sounds include Kouri’s collection of field recordings and live, improvised music on bass, tenor saxophone, guitar and more, which gently persuade the mind into a state of active leisure.

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  • Chad KouriChicago, IL

    Chad Kouri (b. 1985) is a Chicago, Illinois-based artist known for his intuitive, vibrant compositions that utilize the holistic properties of color and abstraction. His mixed-race identity is mirrored by his multidisciplinary studio practice, focusing broadly on visual art, music, and design while considering theories based in minimalism, color theory, semiotics, improvisation, and radical joy. Utilizing a wide range of skillsets and strategies, Kouri reminds us to stay curious and make time for play, rest, and introspection, enabling us more bandwidth for mutual aid and collective community care.

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Chinatown Soup at 16 Orchard Street, New York

New York, NY


Mar 2, 2021-Mar 13, 2021