Curated by Alana Parpal
January 17-February 14, 2015
Reception January 17, 2015 5pm-7pm
Show Press Release
Shoshana Wayne Gallery is pleased to present Rhizome: Multiplicities of Abstraction, a group exhibition featuring work by gallery artists including Philip Argent, Tomer Ganihar, Rachel Lachowicz, Dinh Q. Lê, Abdul Mazid, Oliver Michaels, Izhar Patkin, Elaine Reichek, James Richards, and Beverly Semmes.
This exhibition explores the notion of a non-centered structure, the mulitple, the ever in flux, and the inter-connected. It encourages non-linear thinking and emphasizes the surprise encounter in an effort to illuminate how each impression and exchange shapes ideas. Building on critical theorists Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s concept of the rhizome, the paintings, sculptures, and photographs in this exhibition emphasize the potential of abstraction and encourage the viewer to pause and reflect. As such, each work creates a disruption to the constant flow of information and the visual, symbolic, and linguistic cues which articulate a specific linear historicity.
Philip Argent’s saturated paintings cull their imagery from the digital realm yet the artist’s hand is ever present reminding the viewer of the skill and patience it takes to breathe life into the artificial. Argent’s methodical renderings of imaginary haphazard landscapes become real and tangible and draw linkages between past, present, future, and fantasy.
Tomer Ganihar’s I Can See us Living Here was photographed in the Arava Desert of Israel. Ganihar achieves the gradations of color in his imagery by long hang held exposures. He shoots with 35mm film, uses a mechanical camera and develops the film in a dark room himself.
Rachel Lachowicz’s eyeshadow painting of dehydrated earth depicts a dual catastrophe of climate change in the form of drought and glacial melting where one phenomenon informs the other. Lachowicz captures the simultaneity of each process in one fell swoop as her individual tins of eyeshadow, which are in fact, miniature paintings, come together as parts to a whole.
Dinh Q. Lê’s woven floral photograph is one part to a series titled “Wreaths and Bouquets” in which he imagines a poetic way of remembering the 1999 Columbine massacre with wreaths for those who have passed and bouquets for those who live. Here, the fraught relationship between past and present is rendered lyrically by Lê’s hand utilizing a traditional Vietnamese weaving technique.
Abdul Mazid’s glitter painitng from his CBOE series continues his exploration and dissection of value as the paintings open up a conversation about the effects of structural and systemic power/knowledge. In Mazid’s work, materials and ideas work hand in hand to both distort perception and emphasize the seductive nature of commodification. Mazid’s sculpture functions in a similar way with multiple metallic wood beams piercing a reclaimed chandelier, the artist’s critique of the economy of art.
Oliver Michaels’ photographs are from his “Square in Square” series in which the images are produced by compositing photographs from numerous buildings to create a square structure within a square frame. Beyond the neat composition, Michaels’ work creates a space where documentation and fantasy are mutual, which in turn subverts a rational reading and celebrates the absurd.
Izhar Patkin’s paintings from his “Gardens for the Global City” series embodies the artist’s interest in cultural pluralism. These works employ a reverse painting method with the artist starting from the back pushing paint through the front of the wire mesh screen to achieve a carpet effect. Patkin’s paintings emphasize the artist’s hand and the physical act of painting while, at the same time, revealing his ambivalence toward globalization.
Elaine Reichek’s Richter/Reichek consists of digital embroidery on linen an appropriation of Gerhard Richter’s Color Fields. 6 Arrangements of 1260 Colors (Red-Yellow-Blue), 1974. At the bottom of Reichek’s work is a quote from T.S. Eliot’s essay Tradition and the Individual Talent. For Reichek, the relationship between past and present is rich and complex. She illuminates the potential of the past and shows how it informs the present while, at the same time, paving a new way of thinking about particular histories.
James Richards’ sculpture #247 invites viewers to think about painting in a new way and explores the symbiotic relationship between an unlikely combination of materials: acrylic, polypropylene rope, linen, wood, and plastic fencing. Key to Richards’ work is the correlation between surface and supporting structure. Here, materials and vision work together to subvert easy assumptions thus shifting existing rigid categorizations of painting versus sculpture.
Beverly Semmes’ Mouth is an embroidered print related to her Feminist Responsibility Project, a series of tear-outs from pornographic magazines in which she blots out the graphic image with abstract paint or ink drawings as a way to both protect the subject and the viewer. This particular work is a detail from Semmes’ Mouth Pot drawing on view at Tang Museum. Here, Semmes “draws” over the appropriated image with red thread an act that functions as a cover-up on top of a cover-up while, also referring to her roots in fabric sculptures.
For more information please contact Alana Parpal firstname.lastname@example.org