Mariechen Danz

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Mariechen Danz

Work from her oeuvre

“Mariechen Danz’s art takes as its starting point communication and the transmission of knowledge, placing the body at the center of her practice. In sculptures, drawings, costume designs, and performances she calls into question the expressive capabilities and incapabilities of language, the legibility and hierarchy of signs, and the primacy of Western conceptions of reason – proposing instead a new system of discourse and knowledge transmission that foregrounds, rather than suppresses, the subjectivity inherent in all human understanding. Danz’s works are furthermore activated through her staging and vocal performances. The human body thereby functions as the primary place of investigation for her work – the body as a metaphor, as origin and remains.”

Marie Lund

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Marie Lund

Work from PIT

“Tell me what you see first.
The surface. You meet the outermost layer first through reflection and resonance.
Can you leave anything there?
No, the surface repels. Drops just roll off.
What then?
Then rows of blows. Bang. Bang. Bang.
The material turns around its surface.
From convex to concave.
So it doesn’t repel anymore?
No, now it holds.
The hammer is closest to the arm.
And the more you hammer the bigger your arm gets.
Roughing out.
Close-up. Without stepping back.
The hammer removes the surface and frees the object from its place in time.
What’s underneath the surface?
A new surface.
Layers of surfaces. Densely packed.
The hammer creates volume from the plane.
From spanning to swallowing.
To raise the vessel you start by sinking.
So it moves the worked towards the un-worked?
Yes, and the un-worked towards the worked.
How far will the material allow you to bend its integrity?
How far?
Will the hole always remind you of the digging?”

Gabriele Beveridge

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Gabriele Beveridge

Work from Mainland

“Mainland, the exhibition is illustrated by an image that presents the opposite: a desert island. The sun bleached advertisement stages a destination on the fringe of the world; once a place of luxury, it is now forgotten, abstracted and submerged in shades of blue.

Representations of the island have shifted over the centuries. If for the ancient Greeks, the insular world was a mystical land inhabited by the gods, it became with Thomas More the ideal marginal space for the development of utopian societies. Depicted as a floating piece of earth, suspended in the middle of the sea, the island is promoted today through advertising as a place of leisure and relaxation, detached from the mainland and society.
The artworks in the exhibition echo this duality, conflict and mysticism of Island and Mainland in form and feeling. Here we witness found and made objects: a structure made of chrome, usually used as storage units for shop displays, is pushed until it becomes uncannily wrong, while off kilter glass bubbles clutch to the edges of obsolete advertisements portraying young and distant women whose image is aged and discoloured.

Relentlessly pursuing the edges of a paradise and beauty ready to burst, Beveridge creates an installation that plays with the stereotypes of the island and in which advertised fantasies are merged and conflated. The insular world is presented through an almost clinical aesthetic, as the place for infinite introspection, both enclosed and open to the world.

You bring everything you know that’s real. From the unending isles of Dreamland to your compact home. Billionaire baby. When it bursts you are born…”

Aaron Curry

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Aaron Curry

Work from STARFUKER

“Spanning both of the gallery’s exhibition spaces, STARFUKER will feature the debut of two new major bodies of work. One room will contain two large-scale aluminum and steel sculptures, and the other a group of paintings on shaped canvases. The formal advances in the sculptures and paintings on view represent some of Curry’s most ambitious and risk-taking ideas to date, paralleling an evolution in his approach to the cultural themes always present both on the surface and within the DNA of his art.

STARFUKER, the exhibition’s title, is a red herring: Given the artist’s long-standing connection to Los Angeles and the fact that this show is taking place here, it would seem to point to the spastic and unsavory mixture of sex, celebrity, and power that are part of the city’s reputation and allure. But the stars that appear in this show are of the cosmic variety, and the images conjured by both the paintings and the sculptures point away from the earthly detritus of popular culture that informed earlier bodies of work and toward the spectacularly generative, even erotic chaos that fills the universe at large and appears with increasing acuity in photography of deep space. Curry’s version of the cosmos, however, is one that is informed not only by recent science; equally important are the speculative horizons that are regularly the backdrops of video games, animated movies, and science fiction both in its kitsch-ridden and more paranoid iterations.

The two new major metal sculptures, each painted matte black, strike an unlikely balance between the archaic monumentality of Richard Serra, the modernist biomorphism of Jean Arp and Joan Miró, and the cartoonish contours of the Tomorrowland attractions at Disney theme parks. One sculpture is composed primarily of a curved wall: 12-feet tall and more than 20-feet wide, this imposing element is also the support for a series of tubular, conical, and spherical forms that inhabit its edges and recesses. The other sculpture is organized around a central, rocket-like tower topped with a knotted, tubular element that appears to be precariously balanced with a chain made from looped segments of welded steel. Utilitarian elements like rivets, bolts, and welds (which Curry also uses to sign each sculpture) play an important role in the overall composition of both works.

Until this point, Curry has built the majority of his sculptures using flat forms that intersect along x, y, and z axes. While these new works are extensions of that basic vocabulary, they torque and twist it, suggesting that flatness is no longer only planar, and that even the most rudimentary geometries can be littered with black holes, aporias, and vanishing points. At the same time, they make clear the connection between Curry’s ability to manipulate large tectonic forms and the improvisational freedom and informality of his drawings and collages. Like the chaos-ridden universe itself, these objects are sketches writ large, infinitely reducible, infinitely magnified, tossed off with the exacting rigor of some trickster creation deity. And just as their compositional lightness is played against their physical weight, they channel both the fanciful nature of outer space as it appears in popular culture, and a charred, brooding, post-apocalyptic grandeur informed by the very real prospect of irreversible environmental decay.

This sense of cosmic-play-with-consequences carries through in the shaped canvases that are the sculptures’ counterpoints. They too are composed of both curved and flat planes that are often stacked on top of one another. Their overall shapes resemble helmets, shards of metal, and broadly attenuated fields that read like landscape paintings of other dimensions. The hand- and air-brushed imagery scattered across them, meanwhile, is rife with big bangs and small bangs, trompe l’oeil stellar bursts and graffiti-like tags, as if the cosmic dust and smoky light of nebulae shared an elemental affinity with both spray-paint and bodily fluids. Each is a reminder that in deep space, urban environments, and human bodies alike, creation is always simultaneous with destruction.

For all of their effusively visual pleasures, though, these works subtly reveal the foundational importance of sculpture as a thematic concern in modernist and contemporary painting, whether in Picasso’s bathers from the 1930s, Ellsworth Kelly’s irregularly shaped color fields, or Elizabeth Murray’s explosions of dimensional, vernacular forms. On purely painterly terms, meanwhile, Curry’s compositions exemplify the backlit luminosity emitted by more and more of our intimate household objects, and which constantly vies with the natural world for our attention. His new paintings operate on the principle that this light has found its way into our very conceptions of space and time, and has become a constant reference point by which we interact with the world and understand our place in it. And while he himself uses the computer as a compositional tool, Curry renders both his paintings and his sculptures in immediately tangible materials; in the paintings, in particular, his hand is evident everywhere. The art historical traditions to which these works are powerfully anchored still exert force as a center of gravity.”

Grey

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Grey

Martin Erik Andersen / Chris Bradley / Jesse Darling / Keith Farquhar / Anders Holen / Daniel Keller / Yves Scherer

Curated by Domenico de Chirico at Brand New Gallery

“Grey is a very common colour in nature. The human eye can recognize the same object as grey or as any other colour depending on how much light there is. The eye can distinguish 16 levels of grey. Grey is a complementary colour.

The grey colour in painting has been experimented and theorized for centuries. The Classic conception considers grey as an “off-white”. It can be obtained adding black to white. However, there are other methods to obtain grey: for example combining the three primary colours (blue, yellow, red). In this case grey is called “neutral grey”. Differently from black, this special colour allows to simulate more naturally the shadows. Another way to create grey consists in mixing the primary colours for printing: cyan, magenta yellow.

This colour defines a relationship between the sensible and the super sensible. As Hegel wrote in his essay Encyclopaedia of the Philosophical Sciences1: «the symbol expresses both more and less than its intended meaning.»

“Grey matter” contains most of the brain’s neuronal cell bodies and for this reason grey colour is referred to the intellectual sphere.

Moreover, it represents an attitude characterized by objectivity and balance because grey is a colour which includes white and black: good and evil.

David Batchelor wrote in Chromofobia2: «For this colour – intense, heightened, pure, unqualified – offered a glimpse of the `Other World’, a world beyond Nature and the Law, a world undimmed by language, concepts, meanings and uses.»

He noted that «Dorothy’s Kansas, as we know, is grey.»

Domenico de Chirico

1 G.W.F. Hegel, excerpt from Encyclopaedia of the Philosophical Sciences, 1830

2 David Batchelor, excerpt from Chromophobia, London: Reaktion, 2000”

Micah Hesse

Micah Hesse

Work from Lobbyless

“If the buildings adjoining parliament lacked lobbies, would lobbyists lobby less? Certain buildings harboring concentrations of power are fronted by porticos, loggias, and neoclassical facades that are often meant to symbolize communal inclusion and justice, but what if they were somehow flaccid and could be stretched and squashed? would it allow external influence on politics to wax and wane in synchronization?

Looking at the city from a distance, buildings in Manhattan’s skyline have the apparent scale of miniature tabletop models. Using a type of flat image projection, you might simply grab the models from the skyline, then pop them down onto the sidewalk. One such model skyscraper wags in a figure-eight pattern as if conspiring to distract from something (from what?)

Right outside the lobbies, pipikwnto, or “pigeon-hound”, walks lazily ahead, monotonously avoiding the pursuing steadicam as it sniffs for clues in the crevices between sidewalks and skyscrapers.

Around the empty plots between buildings, construction site fences feature selectively cut viewing holes revealing something and concealing something else.

On the sidewalk, wood planks are taped down over cracks between concrete slabs, covering up the trickling excess from an underground coffee leak.

Inside the lobby, the light pours indirectly from the coves hidden between walls and ceilings, but where does the light come from?

Outside the lobbies, the sun produces an inadvertent two-point lighting setup when direct sunlight meets the light reflected from mirrored glass facades.”

Brian Bress


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Brian Bress

Work from his oeuvre.

“An early video work by Brian Bress titled Rock Your Body (2006) finds the artist in a makeshift space suit dancing to Justin Timberlake’s eponymous song. In front of a carefully engineered homemade set composed of two French doors, two columns, and several sculptural objects, Bress dances while pulling objects out of his front-zippered suit. A large blue vase comes first, followed by several sticks, which he wields like batons during his jerky dance. By the end of the song, the sticks have been neatly put away inside the vase, which is sitting perfectly at the center of the tableau. After the music ends, Bress shimmies off the stage.

The appearance of this LA-based artist’s work has evolved considerably since then. His 2014 solo exhibition at his Los Angeles gallery, Cherry and Martin, included several two-dimensional objects that resembled slick, highly polished, abstract and figural paintings, but were in fact high-definition, flat-screen video animations that featured varying degrees of movement. In the Clayhands series (2014), colored circles embedded within the canvas compositions act as stages for video footage of hands at work molding clay pieces. With the videos playing on loops, these animated paintings turn into abstract theaters where sculptures are made over and over again.

Bress’ practice has evolved organically, through trial and error, to encompass the peculiar mix of drawing, painting, performance, and video that it is today. While his aesthetic sensibilities and technical execution have become much more sophisticated in recent years, his essential strategy remains the same: take a formal structure and burrow into it, exploring and animating it from within to create new ways of seeing and experiencing the scene…” – Carol Cheh for Art Ltd.

Dominic Hawgood


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Dominic Hawgood

Work from Under the Influence

“Hawgood’s practice combines photography, moving image, CGI and lighting design, and explores the aesthetic crossovers between advertising, art and technology. His award winning series Under the Influence examines the use of exorcism within London based African evangelical churches, and the merchandising of these contemporary rituals. The enigmatic experience of seeing deliverance first hand becomes the inspiration for a series that engages with topics about authenticity, desire, and the real.

Hawgood’s technical proficiency and clarity of vision extend beyond the picture plane into the gallery itself, creating an immersive experience similar to current installation art practices. The staging of this work in Oonagh Young Gallery, a dedicated contemporary art space, serves to underline this link with contemporary art.

This multidisciplinary approach to photography represents an exciting departure with a practice rooted in traditional methodology yet conspicuous in its technological and conceptual rigor. Through this series of works and their structured presentation, an inherent ambiguity is highlighted. What is real? Is it fact or fiction we are witnessing? With an eye for detail, every aspect of Hawgood’s work has been thoroughly considered and calls into question ideas of representation and the apparent authority of the photograph itself.”

Juliette Bonneviot

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Juliette Bonneviot

Work from Xenoestrogens

“In her new series Xenoestrogens, Juliette Bonneviot continues her investigations into the nexus between ecology and gender by engaging with the materiality of things through a focused practice. She makes a speculative exploration of the hidden life and power of the chemical compound xenoestrogen (meaning: foreign estrogen), which looks like and mimics estrogen (or oestrogen).

The exhibition consists of paintings Bonneviot made using her collection of different compounds containing types of xenoestrogens. She begins with the core – the chemical xenoestrogen as a material – and spirals outward into many of its biological, cultural and philosophical implications.

In Bonneviot’s thinking, matter is powerful, active and alive. It is dispersive and it moves constantly. Xenoestrogens are a perfectly concentrated example of this movement. Many are deeply disruptive to living systems, having been linked to birth defects, cancerous growth, hormonal disruption, and abnormalities in animal and human reproductive health.

Xenoestrogens can be organic, or synthetic, or mineral. Synthetic xenoestrogens are perhaps the most infamous, found in birth control pills, silicones, oils and lacquers, coolants and insulating fluids, BPA and pesticides, detergents and plasticizers, linens, lotions, shampoos, beverage cans and lacquers. Organic xenoestrogens are found in plant, animal and human life, often performing valuable biological functions, like curbing population growth.

Bonneviot’s process is studied; she gathers, catalogs, archives and arranges her compounds meticulously. In the process of collecting, Bonneviot drew on philosopher Jane Bennett’s description of hoarding as an intentional kind of work, emerging from one’s own attuned orientation to thing-life.

For these paintings, Bonneviot used a variety of xenoestrogens, including: metalloestrogens, which predate oestrogens (and are sourced from aluminum, lead, copper, chrome, antimony, cadmium); phytoestrogens from plants, (extracted from soy and sesame seeds and flax plants); mycoestrogens (pulled from zearalenone, a fungi in grains); and other artificial xenoestrogens (siphoned from silicone, phthalates, BPA, epoxy resins, additives, aspirin and of course, the pill).

The paintings’ minimalism belies their procedural complexity. They involved experimentation with both traditional and unorthodox materials to find the right range of colors, and the right pairings of surfaces with binders. Her mixtures reveal vivid, saturated pigment groups: reds, yellows, blues, earth-colors and greys. (Red, for example, is sourced from silicone rubber, copper, the cadmium pigments in architectural paints and E127 Erythrosine B, a food coloring).

Testing their resistance and flexibility as mediums, she created a linen fabric support with wood floor lacquers to bind, a support of epoxy resins to bind atop PVC, and, in a final iteration, silicone as both binder and surface.

Natural and industrial production intersect on the canvas; the synthetic is mixed in with mineral and organic. Easy binaries and divisions are muddied, as a result. In this flow from ancient organic compounds into the modern and artificial, the viewer is forced to consider a wide arc of time – from the pre-mammalian era, to the future, in which our offspring will be shaped by chemical actants loose in the world now.

In sourcing these xenohormones from a range of organic and synthetic sources, Bonneviot gestures strongly at the “interstitial field of non-personal, ahuman forces, flows, tendencies and trajectories” that define life, as Bennett writes in her seminal text, Vibrant Matter. The materiality and artistry of xenohormones as they both impress and express is one aspect of Bennett’s “agency of assemblages,” or the “working whole made up, variously, of somatic, technological, cultural, and atmospheric elements.

We’re asked to consider the world from the perspective of the chemical itself – where it was birthed, where it journeyed, and in what form it entered the bloodstream, the water and the technological environment. We are also asked to think on environmental contamination, as volatile xenoestrogens lurk, resilient, in treatment plant runoff and pesticides and waste, eroding hormonal and ecological balance.

Chemicals are always present before us as actants, though not always detectable to the naked eye. They transform our human and animal bodies into spaces of great drama. We’re just a few of many assemblages being wrought and remade in a newly synthetic world.”

Nora N. Khan

Katie Torn

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Katie Torn

Work from Room Fifteen at Panther Modern

“New York-based visual artist Katie Torn has filled the fifteenth room of web-based art gallery Panther Modern with eye-catching fluid compositions. Working within the file-based exhibition space, she generated a series of shiny still-life-inspired visuals that fuze organic elements, flexible and distorted rendered character, plants, and art history classics.

“I was thinking a lot about neoclassical odalisques—marble statues of female figures twisted in unnatural positions displayed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art or in the Louvre,” Torn tells The Creators Project. “My aim was to display a figure in a ridiculous pose but one that formally ties the installation together with a sweeping gesture,” she says, using her uncanny signature aesthetic to questions the boundaries of computer-generated works showcased within virtual architecture.

Once again, the LaTurbo Avedon-curated browser-based art space showcases a strong creative potential that provides digital artists with an inspiring platform to generate site-specific digital artworks. “My first step was deciding how to intersect the human body with the architecture,” Torn explains of how she took advantage of the freedom offered by the modulable space architecture. “The installation grew from creating organic pathways that connected the lower main gallery with the small upper gallery that has several pillars. Paint FXs of leaves and flowers became secondary gestures for connecting the two spaces—leading one up from the large figure that starts on the main floor to the hand sculptures that protrude from the columns,” she adds.

Thus, Torn juggles with a combination of tools—including Photoshop, Maya 3D animation, a bunch of modeling softwares and even a liquid simulator called Real Flow—allowing her to embrace the whole space despite the shape and scale specificities. “The most challenging aspect was figuring out how to convey the right scale for the project. I wanted the installation to have a monumental feeling to it. I had to experiment with several lens sizes and angels before I achieved the right effect,” she concludes.”

text via The Creators Project