French gallerist Almine Rech-Picasso opened her first space in Asia on Shanghai's historic Bund in July this year, bringing her eponymous gallery's total locations to five. The Shanghai gallery occupies roughly 4,000 square feet on the second floor of the three-storey Amber Building, a beautiful warehouse space, originally occupied by the Central...
There's an inside joke amongst the team of Ashkal Alwan, The Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts: that every time an edition of its biennial forum on cultural practices is planned, a national crisis happens. The eighth edition of Home Works was no different: it opened on 17 October amidst the most devastating wildfires that Lebanon had witnessed...
Hans Hartung and Art Informel at Mazzoleni London (1 October 2019-18 January 2020) presents key works by the French-German painter while highlighting his connection with artists active in Paris during the 50s and 60s. In this video, writer and historian Alan Montgomery discusses Hartung's practice and its legacy.Born in Leipzig in 1904, Hans...
Marcus Weber, V-Park (2011) (detail). Courtesy Thomas Erben Gallery.
What's great about George Herriman's much admired early-20th-century comic strip Krazy Kat is its nearly unlimited scope for self-awareness. A stripped-down but playfully catholic style — combined with a sturdy, repetitive narrative frame — meant that Herriman could wink at the reader as often as he wanted, without losing his footing or boxing himself in.
Thomas Erben Gallery is pleased to present the first U.S. solo exhibition of Berlin-based painter, Marcus Weber. Last seen in New York at the Sanya Kantarovsky curated group show, Sputterances, at Metro Pictures (Spring 2017), this presentation collects paintings from Weber's 'Adalbertstraße', 'Krazy Kat', and 'Artforum-Leser' series (among others). Comprising work from the past ten years, the show is a bracing introduction to Weber's poppy, comic, and off-kilter geometric approach to abstraction, figuration, and social observation.
Following his studies at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf (1984–1992), Weber quickly established a singular aesthetic. Ironic and unromantic, yet also lively, absurdist, and wry, Weber reflects a generation of Germans who came of age navigating the first wave of the internet's unlimited flood of images.
Though Weber's art has consistently foregrounded formal considerations, over the years his subject matter has increasingly revealed the artist to be an astute cultural observer–including of the immigrant Kreuzberg neighbourhood outside his studio on Adalbertstraße in Berlin. The paintings from this series–V-Park (2011), F-Park (Caparol) (2012), and others–are populated with the familiar touchstones of Kreuzberg: bbqs, squirrels, dog owners out for a walk, women in hijabs out for a stroll or sitting on park benches.
By contrast, the figures in Weber's 'Krazy Kat' series are stylistically simplified, their heads reduced to spheres, their stick-figure bodies rendered as three-dimensional geometric abstractions. KWEE MOKKS (2018) shows four golf ball-headed sitters reading 'Krazy Kat' (1913–1944), George Herriman's avant-garde celebrated comic strip that married self-reflexivity, absurd narration, and surreal stagings with a modernist sensibility–reflecting many of Weber's own interests.
The selection of the works in the exhibition allows the visitor to see how–over time–Weber has both synthesised and alternated between abstraction and comic figuration and between referring to content and generating it.
Weber's 'Artforum-Leser' series proceeds to demonstrate an arch synthesis. In BEST OF 2013 (2014), the titular high-culture magazine is read by comic figures sitting on toilets in an abstractly patterned, yet spatially suggestive environment. In an absurdist stroke, the toilets' drainage drifts off in random paths, functioning both as plumbing as well as formal elements which further define the pictorial space.
Well-known in Germany, where his paintings and sculptures have been widely exhibited–including in an exhibition of the private collection of Kasper König at Galerie Thomas Fischer, Berlin (2018); Kunstwerke, Berlin (2013); and Von der Heydt-Museum, Wuppertal (2008)–Weber's body of work has not yet received the same amount of attention outside of Europe. Striving to broaden Marcus Weber's audience, Thomas Erben Gallery is thrilled to present this exciting artist for the first time in the United States.
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