Kendall Henderson
(b.1989 Colorado) Brooklyn New York
Via Birmingham Alabama

Kendall Henderson
(b.1989 Colorado) Brooklyn New York
Via Birmingham Alabama


Kendall Henderson is an interdisciplinary artist, with a background in Graphic Design and Advertising, with a B.F.A. from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Kendall Henderson has had work included into the Museum of Avant-garde’s permanent contemporary collection.

Here we go
Solo Exhibition
Time Frames, October 2023

Solo exhibition, 81 Leonard, New York, New York. On view from October 5th through November 25th, 2023.

81 Leonard Gallery is pleased to present Time Frames, the first solo exhibition of New York-based artist Kendall Henderson. On view from October 5th through November 18th, 2023, this exhibition presents a spectrum of Henderson’s interdisciplinary practice over the past three years, with each work probing the limits of perception by reframing the manufactured meaning of objects.

Henderson sifts an amalgam of materials that pass through his life, arranging, manipulating, and preserving them in order to reject their original form or perception, while excavating their beauty and painting them into the light of the viewer’s mind. Having spent the last 11 years working in design, his meticulous observation of what compels a person to acquire something and what parts of that thing are deemed significant leads to his decisively subconscious object accumulation. The objects are then laid in proximity to one another, using compositional techniques of repetition, balance, recognition, deconstruction, and distress before preserving the format with an epoxy or pourable cast

Staticity and dynamism work in tandem. At a glance, one might notice a fragment of written language; the next, a reference to a place obscured by currency which has been deconstructed or tucked into a smaller vessel, or a match laid parallel to the transparent frame, in which these multitudes lie in conversation.

Henderson finds particular interest in objects that are a record of experience or interaction, objects that personify growth or time, and objects that were at one point essential in their performance of a function and have since been disregarded after performing that function; such as dried foliage, receipts, packaging, shipping materials, brochures, tickets, used tools, photographs, identification cards, currency, and other life debris.

This progression embraces the paradox of what is distinguishable and the inconceivable point at which it becomes indistinguishable, bringing the viewer to examine the vagueness of life, time and value.

Group Exhibition
Apostrophe, December 2023

Group exhibition, Personal Space, Vallejo, California. Curated by director Lisa Rybovich Cralle.
On view from December 3rd through January 21st, 2023-24.

Works on view: Excavation (one, Studies in Trust), 2022. Excavation (three and four, A Lengthy Exhale Between Our Ears), 2022.

Personal Space is pleased to present its third exhibition, Apostrophe. Drawing inspiration from the title’s connotations of fragmenting and condensing language, as well as its suggestion of possession, the nine artists presented here collect traces of memory. Their poetic, and often mysterious, tendencies capture fragments to suggest a whole, rendering and recording aspects of human vulnerability, identity, and intimacy through a mix of photography, sculpture, painting, and collage. In doing so, these works act as open-ended observations that prioritize the absence of a subject, inviting the viewer to complete the story.

Group Exhibition
I Would Prefer Not To... , October 2023

Group exhibition, at ART150, Jersey City, New Jersey. Curated by Kele McComsey, Director of Mana Contemporary for Art Fair 14C 2023. On view from October 5th — October 15th, 2023.

1: Label Series, 2nd Edition, (ABlackpersonsaysmfepgso...), 2023

The phrase “I would prefer not to” may be one of the most indelible spoken lines in American literature. The declaration derives its power from giving the slightest impression of hope that Herman Melville’s Bartleby may still fall in line with his fellow employees and do as he is told—thereby softening the true defiance of the statement.

The simple addition of “would” and “prefer” creates a complex scenario where the appropriate answer is not readily available. How does one reply to someone “who would prefer not to” participate in society, follow the perceived “social norms,” and do as they are told or expected? The phrase creates more confusion, frustration, and inner dialogue than outright anger, and forces the person on its receiving end to think rather than merely respond. Had Bartleby instead chosen to use the phrase “F___ you, I won’t do as you tell me”, a repeated lyric in Rage against the Machine’s 1992 song “Killing in the Name,” it would have elicited an immediate response without the same introspection, while also granting a form of justification due to a sense of provocation.

“Nothing so aggravates an earnest person as a passive resistance,” Melville wrote in Bartleby the Scrivener (1853). This exhibition seeks to show the importance that artists have in these times by connecting their work to the same spirit of Bartleby’s repeated line of passive resistance. Like Bartleby, we need artists who “would prefer not to” live by the rules if it means overlooking the injustices, inequities, and failures of our systems and exploring the complexities of the human condition. In these days of media overload and global connectivity, where considered language seems nearly obliterated, there seems to be only reaction and immediate response, then hit send. We need to be made to feel uncomfortable if the end result is that it makes us all think, reconsider, and have true dialogue that results in meaningful action.

Press and Features
May Studio Install, 2024

Installation view of Brooklyn studio, May 2024