Who's the Best at Believing
September 11 - October 10
Opening Reception; Saturday, September 11th, 6 - 9pm
15 Orient is delighted to announce the opening of "Who's the Best at Believing"; Mitchell Kehe's second solo exhibition at the gallery.
Faced with whatever comes next, Henry braces herself, then relaxes again realizing she has no idea what it is she’s bracing for or what bracing might do or prevent in whatever comes next. She’s kneeling on the carpet gripping with her right hand a bunched-up sweatshirt. She’s skimming the balled up sweatshirt along the carpet like the belly of an overfed cat . The cat belly might hover just a few millimeters off the surface of the carpet with only belly hairs meeting the fibers; cat fibers meeting carpet fibers. But there’s no cat right now, it’s just Henry and the scrunched-up sweatshirt.
But here comes the cat, quite fat with long orange and white hair. The creamsicle cat has one crushed ear. It happened in a previous life as a street cat before the current life of being fed too much and the hanging belly and the carpet. Now both the wadded-up sweatshirt and the belly are skimming along the carpet. One is very interested in what the other is doing but it is not mutual; the other couldn’t care less about the one. The carpet is a kind of robin’s egg blue with a darker blue pattern of dime-sized flower-like shapes, tulips. Henry braces herself again for whatever comes next.
If the cat arriving was the previous whatever comes next then the bracing was probably wasted. But what if this next whatever comes next is bigger and requires preparation? She figures all she can do is position herself so, if needs be, she is able to stand up quickly. She tilts back onto her toes, lifting her knees into a squat so she’s able to continue the skimming. This is a far less comfortable position for the activity so the skimming is much jerkier as she tries to maintain her balance. And now she’s fallen over.
It’s hard to tell if the falling over was the latest whatever comes next or if there was a whatever comes next that was avoided by squatting and this was simply a consequence of over-preparation and an antsy predisposition. From her fallen-over position Henry continues skimming and it is a pleasure. It’s a different angle and a different kind of satisfaction. She can see the minute distance she’s maintaining between the two things as the one coasts over the other. In her previous kneeling position she was enjoying the sensation of not being able to see how far above the carpet she was skimming but feeling the distance, maybe it was a static electricity or something or maybe who knows how she felt it - we have no idea what the body is capable of. Also, maybe because she has had her spleen taken out her sensitivities are different from someone else’s and certainly different from the cat’s, though they are both really enjoying the skimming of the sweatshirt, interrupted occasionally by their individual anxieties about whatever comes next.
Mitchell Kehe (b. 1984) lives and works in Queens, New York. In 2016, he received a MFA from the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam, NL. Kehe's work has been featured in recent solo and group exhibitions including; "Reassembly" (2021) at Galerie Nordenhake, SE, "All the World's Organs'' (2019) at 15 Orient, NY, and "Assemble Relatives'' (2016) at the Ramfoundation, NL.