Hollis Taggart Contemporary is pleased to announce its participation in the 2023 Edition of EXPO Chicago with an exhibition of recent paintings by gallery artists, Dana James and John Knuth. On view from April 13 – 16 at Navy Pier's Festival Hall, Chicago, the presentation explores the concept of transcendence through material manipulation.
James' new body of work from 2023 coalesces bright pastel palettes with recycled canvas. She incorporates unorthodox materials such as flecks of foil and iridescent encaustic that create surprising glimmers of light embedded within opaque colour fields, evoking the magical play of moonlight or the glinting of the ocean. She manipulates materials to create such transcendental effects that recall nature, and endeavour to capture memory and transience as a feeling or a moment caught in time.
Central to Knuth's work, too, is the idea of materials eclipsing their nature. Knuth employs mediums traditionally regarded as base, and alchemically turns them into sublime and transcendent works, creating stunning paintings by way of indelicate and unique techniques. To create his flyspeck paintings, Knuth raised hundreds of thousands of houseflies from the larval stage, feeding them a mixture of sugar and acrylic paint. The flies digest and regurgitate this mixture onto the canvases, leaving millions of colourful flyspeck markings and yielding incandescent, shimmering paintings reminiscent of Seurat's pointillism. To control this process and the densities of the colours, the artist built special enclosures that limited the flies' movements. By collaborating with flies, which are base creatures associated with decay, Knuth's paintings force extreme tension between the sacred and the profane.
Incorporating unconventional materials, both James and Knuth explore the ways in which transcendence can emerge from the most unpredictable of materials, moments, and processes.
For more information on the gallery's booth presentation please contact us at +1 212.628.4000 or [email protected].