Simon Lee Gallery is proud to present our second exhibition in Hong Kong of influential German artist Hans-Peter Feldmann.
Characterised by its engagement with art history and vernacular imagery, Feldmann’s conceptual work has developed over more than four decades. A compulsive collector and appropriator of found images and everyday ephemera, Feldmann’s oeuvre incorporates photography, sculpture, installation, drawing and painting. With surprising humour and subtle intervention, he systematically reconstructs existing images and objects to reflect on representation and the construction of ideologies.
His works often propose a gently irreverent subversion of the structures and systems of value on which the art market and the wider art world are predicated. One consistent strand of his practice has involved the appropriation and modification of historic oil paintings – most often bourgeois portraits and genre paintings of the 19th century.
For this exhibition Feldmann presents a series of such paintings installed on custom made stands. These traditional, gilt-framed portraits of couples, children, pets, soldiers and women, selected and sourced from auctions, are subverted by the addition of red noses, cross-eyes, tan lines and redaction blackouts. The installation invites visitors to make connections within and between the works as they weave through a maze of teasing, upended representations of youth, class, nostalgia, sexuality, war and beauty.
Disrupting long-held assertions of the artist’s role as a unique creator, Feldmann’s appropriation of these sincere, nuanced, intimate portraits and his attention to the evocative formal qualities of paint on canvas seemingly penetrates a collective consciousness. This creeping nostalgia for a life that never was is supplanted by uncanny alternative narratives, reminding us of the power of images in creating personal and political myths and just how unreliable individual and collective memory is.
Press release courtesy Simon Lee Gallery.
A new exhibition of work by German photographic artist Hans-Peter Feldmann is about to go on show at Simon Lee Gallery, Hong Kong. Characterised by its engagement with art history and vernacular imagery, Feldmann’s conceptual work derives from found images and everyday ephemera. Feldmann’s oeuvre mixes photography with sculpture, installation...