Occupying both floors of the gallery, the exhibition brings together fifteen artists born after 1980, who take distinct and diverse approaches to the medium of painting. From those that use painting for its immediacy to those who utilise it for project-based investigations, the exhibition does not aim to identify a specific theme or trend. Instead, it demonstrates the continued mutability of painting as a practice, and its malleable nature that extends beyond its physical application.
Han Bing's (b. 1986, Shandong, China) work is rooted in the urban environments in which she lives and works. Drawing on her own photographs, often taken in transit stations or at construction sites, Bing actively removes representational references from her paintings, instead allowing them to investigate complex and layered spatial relationships. The works develop through a process of constant revision, subject to the push and pull of the painter's touch, and the unpredictable nature of material. What remains through this are fragments, small glimpses of reality in the midst of chaos, and a mirroring of our own relationship with the world around us as we live through cycles of destruction, and rebuilding. Han Bing lives and works in Beijing, and has had solo exhibitions at Night Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; and Antenna Space in Shanghai, China. She has been included in numerous group exhibitions at venues which include the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China, Bernier/Eliades Gallery, Hong Kong, China, and D-Space, Beijing, China. Her work is held in the collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles.
Gabriella Boyd's (b.1988, Glasgow, Scotland) richly layered paintings centre themselves around seemingly everyday encounters. Confined to claustrophobic interior spaces, Boyd's figures appear simultaneously anonymous and intimate as they are locked in an often ambiguous power dynamic, as narrative slips in and out of focus. Often functioning in groups, what emerges is a preoccupation with the idea of care, both mental and physical, and the often shifting degrees of control we maintain over our own bodies, and their disintegration. Gabriella Boyd lives and works in London. She studied at Glasgow School of Art and Royal Academy Schools, London. Recent exhibitions include the solo shows For Days, Seventeen Gallery, 2020, Help Yourself, Blain Southern, London, 2018, and group exhibitions include Silent Tourist, Mackintosh Lane, London, 2019, The London Open at Whitechapel Gallery, London, 2018, Dreamers Awake, White Cube Bermondsey, London,2017, among others. In 2015 Boyd was commissioned by the Folio Society to illustrate anew edition of Sigmund Freud's The Interpretation of Dreams.
Guglielmo Castelli's (b. 1987, Turin, Italy) intricate paintings are rooted in a hybrid universe that seems to eschew time and spatial boundaries. Theatrical in appearance, the works depict familiar scenes, such as cafes, performances, and intimate encounters. His emotive figures appear sinuous in nature, and free from constraints as they meld with the spaces around them, whether they be monochromatic backgrounds, or vivid interiors. Ranging from depictions of melancholy, astonishment, and wonder, the paintings' characters maintain an unsteady grasp on reality as they move between spectacle and confinement. Guglielmo Castelli lives and works in Turin. His work is currently included in FUORI 2020 Art Quadriennale, Rome, on view through Spring 2021. Later this year, Castelli's work will be the subject of an exhibition at Museo Ettore Fico, Turin. Recent exhibitions include Rolando Anselmi, Berlin, 2020, Berlin, a residency at LA Brea Studio, Los Angeles, 2020. His work was featured in several institutional exhibitions including :Biennale Internazionale d'Art Contemporain de Melle, 2018, the Parkview Museum, Singapore, 2018, Foundation Louis Vuitton, Paris, 2018, Museum Of Contemporary Art of Saint Etienne, 2016, and Pinacoteca Nazionaledi Bologna, 2016, among others.
Bendt Eyckermans (b. 1994, Antwerp, Belgium) melds modernity and tradition in his work, which anchors itself as local and historical in its approach. Often depicting everyday scenes, including those from his studio, Eyckermans' figures seem almost plastic, appearing in contorted or exaggerated poses, and are further dramatised through the use of strong shadows and almost filmic lighting that lends his compositions a dreamlike quality. Constantly harvesting art-historical references, as well as his own personal history and experience, Eyckermans aims to distill these elements into a new visual language. Bendt Eyckermans lives and works in Antwerp. His work is currently included in Lipstick and Gas Masks, on view at M HKA, Antwerp through April 18. Past solo exhibitions include Blueshadow, Gallery Sofie Van de Velde, Antwerp, 2019 Yellow leaves, CARLOS/ISHIKAWA,London, 2019, A Stranger's Hand, S.M.A.K., Ghent, 2018, and Kusseneers Gallery, Brussels,2018, among others.
Daisuke Fukunaga's (b. 1981, Tokyo, Japan) work centres itself around life's ordinary moments, focusing on familiar objects that are often overlooked. Referring to these as 'indescribable sculptures' Fukunaga's paintings remove them from their original context, personifying them alongside figures that enact the artist's own experiences with these objects - his emotions, moods and sensation. Painted in rich colours, his compositions often appear pulled or stretched as if by a magnetic force, as they transform Fukunaga's own interior interactions into new, dynamic universes. In 2020, Fukunaga's work was the subject of an exhibition at Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo. His work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including The Alpha and the Omega, Uriwari Sekitei Park, Yamagata, Japan, 2020, island, Art Laboratory Hashimoto, Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan,2019, Sayonara Jupiter, 356 Mission, Los Angeles, 2017, A Walk around the Contemporary Art World after Paradigm Shift, The Museum of Fine Arts, Gifu, Japan, 2015, among others.
Lewis Hammond's (b. 1987, Wolverhampton, UK) paintings seek to create tangible representations of a shared sense of anxiety, often referencing the imminent crises our world faces, such as the dissipation of natural resources. Nearly gothic in appearance, the works depict figures, together or alone, distorted and confined in small, claustrophobic spaces. Combined with surrealist and historical references, Hammond aims to portray various psychological states for which there is no fixed representation. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions include Still life, Lulu, Mexico City, 2020, The Keep, Arcadia Missa, London, 2019, Isle (with Rafal Topolewski), Smart Objects, Los Angeles, 2018, among others. Hammonds work has been included in numerous group exhibitions including Possessed, MOCO, Montpellier, 2020, Particularities, X Museum, Beijing, 2020, A House Is Not a Home, Kunsthalle Fribourg, 2019.
In his work, Behrang Karimi (b. 1980 in Schiraz, Iran) seeks to affirm his own existence, using painting to clarify his own sparks of imagination and gestures. Sited in perspectivally flat landscapes, Karimi's marionette-like figures seem to float above the ground, coming in and out of focus. Ingenuous in approach, and often influenced by Karimi's domestic life, his works demonstrate a rejection of our digital existence, instead affirming the transformative potential of aesthetics. Behrang Karimi currently lives and works in Cologne and Düsseldorf. Recent solo and two person exhibitions include Alastair Mackinven, Behrang Karimi, Maureen Paley, London, 2019, Femdom, Pantaleonsmühlengasse/ Part1, Cologne, Germany, 2016 and Arbeiten aus dem Hinterkopf, AF Projects, London, 2014. Recent group exhibitions include Here, Here.., curated by Tenzing Barshee, Braunsfelder Family Collection, Cologne, Germany, Salon des Amateurs, TRAMPS, London, 2018, Eggy and Seedy, curated by Matt Copson and Alastair Mackinven and Reading International Festival, Reading, UK, 2017.
Dominique Knowles' (b. Nassau, Bahamas, 1996) paintings defy traditional notions of how we centre power around humanity, instead seeking a more egalitarian relationship between humans and the natural world. Animals are a motif within Knowles work, and are often used as an empathetic representation of life's own cycles, desire, joy, grief, and mourning. Using large swaths of colour to represent light or times of day, Knowles' figures often appear simultaneously emerge from, and disappear into the brushstrokes in the background. In creating this fluidity, Knowles aims to inspire a greater connection between the viewer and the natural world. Dominique Knowles lives and works in Chicago. Knowles received both his MFA in Painting as a New Artist Society Award full scholar in 2020 as well as his BFA in 2017 from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Recent solo exhibitions include Soccer Club Club, Chicago, 2020, Goldfinch Project, Chicago, 2020, The Green Gallery East, Milwaukee, 2019, The National Art Gallery of The Bahamas, Nassau, 2017.
Dana Lok (b. 1988, Berwyn, PA) develops her works in series, seeking to create visual representations of abstract ideas and concepts. Acknowledging the impossibility of this pursuit, Lok takes pleasure in the errors in translation, welcoming the contingent information that appears as idea solidifies into image. In turn, this reflects the ways everyday thought and communication are transformed from ideas into concrete metaphors. Dana Lok lives and works in New York. Lok received her MFA from Columbia University in 2015, and in 2016 attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine. Recent Solo Exhibitions include One Second Per Second, Page (NYC), New York,2020, Words Without Skin, Clima, Milan, 2019, Mind's Mouth, Bianca D'Alessandro Gallery, Copenhagen, 2018, and The Set of All Sets, Chewday's, London, 2016. In 2018, Lok was the recipient of the Rema Hort Grant, Rema Hort Mann Foundation, NY.
In her research-based practice Megan Marrin (b. St. Louis, MO) seeks out objects, historical relics, and natural occurrences that work as stand-ins to investigate the fragility of life's cycles. Working in series, Marrin often directly replicates these objects in stark compositions, prompting reflection on the myriad of ways we seek to control or condition our bodies. Often extreme in their format and installation, Marrin's paintings make apparent the absence of the human body itself, suggesting that the objects replicated within them may be intended for the viewer's use. Megan Marrin lives and works in New York City. Recent solo exhibitions include, Megan Marrin, Convalescence, Queer Thoughts, New York,2020, Corps, David Lewis, New York, 2017, and I Like Your Backpack, with Elif Erkan, Wiels Contemporary Art Center, Brussels, 2014, among others.
Leslie Martinez (b. 1985, McAllen, Texas) creates abstract paintings that reflect their life-long interest in boundary permeation and how this idea manifests and evolves, both materially and gesturally. Themes of self-determination, embodiment, obfuscation, and futurity, are channeled through visual and haptic references to destruction and reconfiguration, often as a meditation on Martinez's own experience with their queerness ,and borders. Fabric and paper-based materials processed over the course of months and years are forged into dense and dissolving surfaces with sprawling colour, often using non-traditional tools and techniques referencing natural time-based processes of transformation. Through this, perceptual shifts occur, transforming sensations of time, scale, and space to elicit the bewildering tension between desire and refusal. Leslie Martinez lives and works in Dallas. They received a BFA from the Cooper Union in 2008 and an MFA from Yale School of Art in 2018. Recent exhibitions and projects include Martinez's first solo show, Thrashing on the Mooring Mast, And Now, Dallas, TX, 2020, Monarchs on the Hoop commissioned by the Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, TX, 2020, Cruising the Horizon, New York University's Latinx Project, New York, NY, 2021.
Matt Morris' (b. Louisiana) recent paintings investigate the evolving role of painting following the industrial revolution and the advent of photography. Culling images appropriated from the artistic production and advertising of the late 19th through 20th century, Morris renders these with impressionist affects - a movement that helped usher in Modernity, and led to rapid changes in the cultural understandings of beauty and aesthetic. Developed through a process of continual accretion, the works also examine how painting as a medium receded into its own layers of material and reference. Matt Morris is an artist, writer, curator who lives and works in Chicago. Morris has presented artwork nationally and internationally including RUSCHMAN, Berlin, Germany, Krabbesholm Højskole, Skive, Denmark, The Suburban, Milwaukee, DePaul Art Museum, Chicago, The Mary + Leigh Block Museum of Art, Evanston, Illinois, The Elmhurst Art Museum, Elmhurst, Illinois, and The Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati, among others. Morris is a contributor to Artforum.com, Art Papers, ARTnews, Flash Art, Fragrantica, Sculpture, The Seen, and X-TRA Contemporary Art Quarterly. Morris holds a BFA from the Art Academy of Cincinnati and in 2013, earned an MFA from Northwestern University . Morris is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Sophie Reinhold's (b. 1981, Berlin, Germany) practice is rooted in her own understanding of material, and dedication to the medium of painting. Often shaping her canvases in sections, Rheinhold applies marble powder to her surfaces, lending them an iridescent sheen. Running beneath these are Reinhold's meditations on diverse imagery that ranges from Greek Mythology, which Reinhold gravitates towards for its tenuous relationship with morality, to icons and slogans from her upbringing in East Berlin. Sophie Reinhold lives and works in Berlin. Past solo exhibitions include Das kann das Leben kosten, CFA Berlin 2020,Kein Witz, No Joke, Kunstverein Reutlingen, Germany, 2018, Portrait of ..., Kunstverein Friedrichshafen, Germany, 2014, among others. Rheinhold has participated in numerous group exhibitions at venues which include Kunstverein Ingolstadt, Germany, 2020 n.b.k.,Berlin, 2020, Braunsfelder, Cologne, 2018, and Växjö Konsthall, 2018, among others.
In his work Henry Shum (b. 1998, Hong Kong) creates thematic connections amongst eclectic images and sources, mediating these through undulating lines and delicate washes of paint. His subjects appear almost otherworldly, and occupy tenebrous spaces that are both distant and familiar. Many of his works depict a form of internal movement, or conflict, that suggest multiple realities within a work. This tendency is not a reflection of Shum's own desire, but instead that of the constant flow and merging of memory and image, history and simulation, and individuality and collectivity that we must navigate every day. In Shum's works, these binaries appear to ultimately collapse on each other, representing our endlessly mediated present. Henry Shum lives and works in Hong Kong, and received his BA from Chelsea College of Arts, London, in 2020. Empty Gallery, Hong Kong presented Shum's first solo exhibition in 2020.
Kate Spencer Stewart's (b. 1984, Phoenix, AZ) paintings appear as undulating surfaces that pulse with energy. Often working in a large-format that represents the physical limitation of her wingspan, Stewart's paintings are developed in meticulous layers over time. Constantly calibrating and negating her own marks, Stewarts paintings are the product of a process of constant revision, and wrestling with the material itself. The resulting works are colour fields that constantly diverge or are otherwise interrupted, creating an experience that can't be translated into language. Kate Spencer Stewart lives and works in Los Angeles, and received her MFA from UCLA, Los Angeles in 2017. In 2022, Stewart will have a solo exhibition at La Maison de Rendez-Vous, Brussels. Recent solo exhibitions include Park View / Paul Soto, Los Angeles, 2020 and The Gallery @ Le Hangar Restaurant, Paris, 2019. Stewart has participated in numerous group exhibitions at venues which include Misako & Rosen Gallery, Tokyo, 2019, Piktogram Gallery, Warsaw, 2019, and 356 Mission, Los Angeles, among others.
Press release courtesy Andrew Kreps Gallery.
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