Possessions curated by Zoé Whitley
Preview: October 7 – 8 Public Access: October 9 – 16 and simultaneously at the gallery, October 7 – 17
Mike Cloud solo project:
Mike Cloud is a painter who builds irregularly shaped canvases that wed the frame and painted surface into a woven whole through sculptural strategies. By combining his conceptual approach with a material richness and a sensual handling of wet-into-wet technique, Cloud reveals the range of significations connected to shapes, surfaces and symbols in an infinitely malleable, direct and forcefully abstract mode.
In his most recent exhibition, Tears in abstraction (Thomas Erben Gallery, fall 2019), Cloud uses abstraction to offer the viewer an aesthetic account of individuality, death and the empathic space of communion in absence of the political mechanisms of personal, racial, cultural and gendered identification.
As to this project for Frieze London, Cloud wrote in a recent email to the gallery:
"This is a continuation of my investigation into abstract approaches to portraiture and the subject of bodily suffering in the victims of chance, crime and the state.
Through shattered constructions, bold color and painterly surfaces, I attune the aesthetics of my expressionistic painterly treatment to the particular key of collective consciousness and mourning.
I feel this is an important project because the most radical challenge to the modernist conception of 'personal' or expressive art making is the contemporary conception of 'identity' where in all subjects are considered as primarily a set of intersectional political coordinates larger than themselves. Likewise the greatest provocation to the concept of Western liberal democracy is the seaming impossibility of meeting the demands of the victims of chance, crime and political injustice."
Press release courtesy Thomas Erben Gallery.