July 10 – August 23, 2014
OPENING: Thursday July 10th, 2014 from 6-9PM
Timothy Uriah Steele
The Hole is proud to present our summer exhibition in the main galleries, Go With The Flow, looking at the diverse and contemporary uses of sprayed paint. From aerosol to airbrush and further into the field of atomized paint, these artworks range from the slickly gradiented to the more surreptitiously sprayed, with a lot of flying paint in between.
Atomizing paint is an approach often associated with the automotive world, industrial painting and products, even down to the boardwalk airbrush tee. The history of contemporary artists using spray is more limited; Surrealists explored the nascent technology, Kandinsky, too; and really not too much else went on in sprayed painting besides a 60s L.A. airbrush movement or Jules Olitski until the slick fabrication art of the 90s upsurge in industrial painting techniques. After digital technology made the world of images screenic and pixelated, gradients reappeared in painting as a mainly digital aesthetic with compressors the easiest way to achieve them in painting.
Simultaneous to all this, of course, the 70s and 80s birthed graffiti culture, the single most impactful global image movement, and the world’s cities have been covered in spray ever since. Besides the often-embarrassing graffiti art in galleries, this aesthetic mostly influenced painting from afar, with artists like Sterling Ruby borrowing the tools and vibe, or Barry McGee conceptually tackling the culture head-on with his animatronic tagger sculptures and huge fill-ins on museum facades.
But the commercial and the graffiti are not the only two angles from which to approach sprayed paint and this exhibition looks at the diversity of uses it has for contemporary artists now. Since Tauba Auerbach turned her Deitch Projects Williamsburg studio into a spray booth back in 2009, the number of emerging artists I have visited whose studio was prophylactically plastic-ed over for atomized paint is staggering. The impulses to spray are manifold:
Artists like Greg Bogin, Michael Staniak, Evan Gruzis, Eric Cahan or more emerging painters Timothy Steele or Zane Lewis favour the perfect color gradients possible only with spray. Getting the seamless tonal shift of a sunset across an artwork is the magic realm of sprayed paint where the eye can settle on no demarcation of color and moves over the surface with nothing to hold onto. Alien looking and anti-eyeball, sprayed gradients are the realm of the void–a non-space–and evocatively so.
Artists like Adam Henry and Keltie Ferris use spray in a chunkier or more literal way to examine the properties possible in the hovering of color through atomization. Ferris creates depths and fogs in her paintings while Henry creates autonomous geometries hovering on a fresco-like white background.
Trudy Benson includes a painting that has both sprayed elements and painted elements in the shape of the Photoshop “spray tool” looking at what the semiotics of spray includes and how a computer suggests it. Austin Lee’s work remains almost entirely in the realm of the computer-generated image aesthetic–though all his paintings are handmade with airbrush–and the figures and settings are cartoonishly left-handed and humorously maladroit.
Michael Dotson or Rosson Crow, Brian Belott or Wendy White use spray in works that are representational to selected and specific ends. Dotson uses spray in a digital way as a “gradient fill” where areas of the composition get a blast of color gradient to make a very screenic looking painting. Crow uses spray around her oil paintings of haunted-looking historical interiors to create a dreamlike atmosphere of hovering walls and furniture. Wendy White and Brian Belott here include sprayed and non-sprayed elements (a sweat sock, a photographic print, mirrored plexi) collaged together in hybrid compositions that perhaps ground the ethereality of spray in something tangible and recognizable.
JIMJOE, KATSU and Jesse Edwards come out of public street spraying culture but make works that are not graffiti but tangentially relate: JIMJOE’s painting features the tail end and the barely beginning of two well-known graffiti writers’ “fill-ins”, KATSU figured out how to program drones to carry spray cans and spray remotely: something very threatening to law enforcement but here in the realm of painting explores instead the technological mediation of painting. Edwards contributes an airbrushed ceramic television of semi-blurred-out Disney figures, emphasizing the rebirth of spray being tied crucially to our screenic culture.
Jessica Ciocci’s multi-panel piece emphasizes the DIY and handmade aspect of spray through the repetitive stencil compositions, highlighting how a can of spray paint puts rapid color in the hands of everyone and is a powerful and democratic tool. Dennis Hoekstra exhibits a multi-panel painting where, using spray and other secret faux-finishing techniques, he can recreate the distressed and diverse surfaces of the streets on canvas.
For more information on each artist, images or press inquiries please contact Krysta@theholenyc.com
Cover image by Zane Lewis, Untitled (Atmosphere I), 2014]]>
July 10 – August 23, 2014
OPENING: Thursday July 10th, 6-9pm
The Hole is proud to present an exhibition in Gallery 3 by infamous Canadian artist and filmmaker Bruce LaBruce that will include the debut of his fragrance, Obscenity. In an exhibition of photography examining sexual and religious ecstasy as well as the unveiling of his fragrance, this will be his first solo gallery exhibition in America since 2010’s “Untitled Hardcore Zombie Project” at Peres Projects, Los Angeles.
In LaBruce’s own words:
Obscene (adj.) 1590s, “offensive to the senses, or to taste and refinement,” from Middle French obscène (16c.), from Latin obscenus “offensive,” especially to modesty, originally “boding ill, inauspicious,” of unknown origin; perhaps from ob “onto” (see ob-) + caenum “filth.”
What is obscenity? For me, the word may have a different connotation than the one affixed to it by genteel society. Over the years, when my films and photographs have been returned to me after exhibitions in international festivals or galleries, Canadian customs officials have frequently seized the works at the border and sent me a notification in their stead with the word OBSCENITY writ large, an X luridly slashed in a box beside it. To me, it has become a badge of honour. For one man’s obscenity is another man’s art. Or romance. Or sensibility. Or scent.
Staring at OBSCENITY, eventually I came to realize that the word SCENT is contained with in it. And thus came the first inspiration to develop a fragrance of the same name. A fragrance in flagrant disregard of the pejorative insinuation attributed to the word. In flagrante delicto: caught in the very act of committing a misdeed or offense. In fragrance delicto!
Exhibiting a collection of my photographs in Madrid 2012 at La Fresh Gallery–photographs that examined the delicate intersection between religious and sexual ecstasy–I first recuperated the word Obscenity as something sensual, erotic, and beyond the judgment of society or religion. Against storms of protest, the word for me transgressed its etymological origin as something offensive or filthy and became something transcendent: something mysterious, martyred, and carnal. Carnal knowledge is power.
What does obscenity smell like? To explore this question, I had to consult an expert. Enter Kim Weisswange, perfumer extraordinaire. Meeting the formidable woman in the flesh in Hamburg, I explained to her my history with obscenity, and the feelings the word invokes in me. The synthesis of the religious or the spiritual and the sexual is a potent one, and requires a potent fragrance. I left this special olfactory alchemy to the expert.
What does obscenity look like? For the bottle cap and design, I collaborated with my favourite jewelry designer, Jonathan Johnson, who had already made an Obscenity ring for me in conjunction with my photo exhibition. Mr. Johnson has an uncanny way of interpreting sexual and religious imagery to make them seem interchangeable, one and the same. Far from blasphemy, the “nun-sploitation” cap, mapped from a 3-D scan of the curvaceous body of his fiancé and muse Katja-Inga Baldowski, then perched on the hostia, the holy wafer placed lovingly on a tongue, is intended as a sincere tribute to the sensual throes of ecstasy that cause you to throw your head back and fix your gaze toward heaven, a gesture generally reserved for fervid prayer or orgasm.
This is the essence of Obscenity.
TMAGAZINE – NEW YORK TIMES
For inquiries, or to purchase Bruce la Bruce, limited edition Obscenity Parfum, please contact email@example.com
June 16-21, 2014
VIP Preview: Monday, June 16 from 12-2pm
Public Vernissage: Monday, June 16 from 2-8pm
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, June 17-21, 12-8pm
The Hole is proud to participate in the tenth anniversary edition of VOLTA, VOLTA10 in Basel, Switzerland. We will present new works by Kadar Brock, Gabriel Pionkowski, Evan Robarts, Kasper Sonne and Matthew Stone over the course of the fair, including a major installation by Sonne across the front of our booth. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for available works or additional information.
Above: Kasper Sonne, TXC58, Industrial paint and chemicals on canvas in aluminum frame, 60 x 48 inches
Matthew Stone, Noble Intentions Might Affect More Harm Than Good, But Conscious Evil Rarely Spawns Virtue, 2014, photographic print on beech-veneered MDF with walnut frame, 48 x 36 inches
Evan Robarts, Untitled, 2014, Crayola and acrylic on panel, 72 x 48 inches
Kadar Brock, deredemiscxxiiii, 2014, acrylic, oil, flashe and spray on canvas, 25 x 32 inches
Gabriel Pionkowski, Untitled, 2011, deconstructed, hand-painted and woven canvas, pine and acrylic, 45 x 35 inches
Curated by Toby Clarke and Kathy Grayson
May 7 – June 20, 2014
OPENING: Wednesday, May 7th from 6-8PM
The Hole is proud to present our May exhibition utilizing our entire three galleries, Warp & Woof, curated by Toby Clarke and Kathy Grayson. Taking its title from the weaving terms “warp” (the vertical and static component of the weave) and “woof” (the dynamic and horizontal aspect of the weave), this exhibition looks at textile-driven abstraction across continents in emerging art.
Weaving is included in the show both literally (with woven works like the above piece by Gabriel Pionkowski where each thread of the canvas is de-threaded, painted, then rewoven over a pine wood frame) and metaphorically, as “warp and woof” can be interpreted as the underlying structure of any process or system. The artists in exhibition unravel the trite cliché of the “fabric” of life by taking a temporal and indeed systemically structured approach to abstraction favoring personal history, traces, residues and chance.
Ayan Farah, Kadar Brock, Graham Wilson and Alek O. all create process-driven abstraction that includes serendipitous destruction and creation operating within the systems they have created. Farah works with natural processes like light, heat, earth, wind and water to make “forensic” paintings without paint and composed by forces larger than the artist’s hand. Brock creates his own “ecosystem” of paint where works are scraped and sanded, paint is collected in chips or vacuumed as dust and reworked into the lifecycle of his paintings and sculpture. Lewis works in a similar recyclical structure where paintings are sliced, stripped and reconstituted as the artist responds to and drives forward a circular artistic process. Alek O. here exhibits a repatterned and oragami-esque stretched parasol bleached by the sun.
Evan Robarts, Shinique Smith and Hank Willis Thomas include found materials into their conceptual framework in a web of memory, history and cultural forces. The discarded balls woven into reclaimed fences from dog parks or back yards in Robarts work evokes a certain nostalgia in palette and ghost of past activity, while Willis Thomas’ quilted athletic jerseys juxtapose family and warmth with public contest and sweat. Smith will here exhibit one of her “bales” of discarded clothes and fabric assembled into a chaotic monolith of towering textiles.
Nika Neelova, Penny Lamb and Moffat Takadiwa use architectural ghosts to weave new artworks, as Lamb exhibits a sinister sewn-together floor plan of a mental institution and Neelova exhibits a Mobius strip of reclaimed bannisters from derelict buildings. Takadiwa exhibits a hand-sewn work of reclaimed computer keys from trashed computers into a strange topography of non-information. These artworks look at how architecture and memory take shape in our subconscious.
Using both found and cast materials, Henry Krokatsis creates work that conjoins separate but wholly interdependent elements. Here he shows a non-functional cast black rubber mirror form that holds geometry, austerity and a lack of gesture. This is cast from, and joined with, a found junk shop mirror that, by its nature, embraces arbitrariness, material history and the narrative reward of subject matter. The piece shows the interconnection of elements fundamentally embraced by minimalism with the qualities minimalism sought to eradicate.
Tonico Lemos Auad, Gabriel Pionkowski and Johnny Abrahams perhaps exhibit the most direct “weaverly” tendencies but each includes the destruction of the weave simultaneous to the order it provides: Lemos Auad makes his works by actually unthreading parts of the textile to make ghostly shapes of removed threads in his screen pieces, while Pionkowski as mentioned above begins by de-threading the canvas completely. Abrahams paints meticulous panel paintings of silk Moiré patterns that, in pushing the digital interjection of image-making in between the weave and the painting, creates and captures these eye-boggling visual disruptions in the fabric. These artists inject entropy and disruption into the fixed grid of the weave and pushes within the limiting “warp and woof” to make space for emotion and poetry.
This exhibition was curated by Toby Clarke and Kathy Grayson in collaboration. Toby Clarke is the owner of VIGO Gallery, London where he has presented recent solo exhibitions by Abrahams, Farah, Neelova and Brock.
For more information on each artist, images or press inquiries please contact Krysta@theholenyc.com
The Hole is proud to present our second solo exhibition of Kansas City/New York City artist Jaimie Warren. In this show Jaimie will debut a large and complex group videopiece in Gallery 2 that was many months and many people and many costumes in the making; while Gallery 1 will include new self-portrait works from her “totally looks like” and “food’lebrities” series, as well as a totally new body of work of GIFS where Jaimie injects a bit of motion and a bit of performance into her signature self-portrait creations.
Jaimie’s pièce de résistance is a five-channel video remake of Fra Angelico’s High Altarpiece of San Domenico in Fiesole, here recreated panel by panel featuring 200 of her friends. Each of the five panels is a tribute to personal cultural influences, selected by three generations of Warren’s family. Her grandmother’s selections include vintage entertainers like Betty Boop, Howdy Doody or Groucho Mark, with a few modern surprises like Liberace or JLo popping up, while her mother’s choices mix Pink Floyd, Tina Turner, Jim Morrison and Princess Diana, each character arranged as in the altarpiece painting. Warren’s panel of her favourite people is in the center where she appears as Missy Elliot in her famous garbage bag costume singing a duet with the possessed demon girl from The Exorcist. The portrait guide on the opposite wall in Gallery 2 will tell you who is who.
For her new GIF creations she trolls catchy internet video memes or B-movie blunders to find short clips of video she can remake frame by frame. They are composed like her elaborate self-portraits with make up, prostheses, masks, homemade sets and costumes, all real and no Photoshop; however, here there is the jerky motion of the GIF format that allows Warren to begin to sculpt a more filled out character or impersonation.
In this show we also find some great new additions to her classic “Totally Looks Like” or “Food’lebrities” menagerie with Lil’ Wayne totally looking like a Twilight Zone gremlin, Boy George totally looking like Ralph Wiggum, and some new food groups added like “Tuna Turner” or “Jack Pumpernickelson” and the tongue twister “Chicken Tikka Masalvador Dali.”
As Loring Knoblauch writes in his forthcoming essay on Warren, “Her campy silliness and makeshift costumes mask a much more thoughtful and consistent artistic investigation into how we build personal identity. Like an Internet-age sociologist, Warren is tracking our many quirks and fancies, taking note of what catches our eye, and carefully mapping the ways in which our shared ideas become inputs into who we are. In her world, pop culture has become a new kind of religion, and by using Fra Angelico’s altarpiece to channel the likes of the Lone Ranger, Liza Minnelli, Ghostface, and Flavor Flav, she has convincingly made the argument that we still mark ourselves by those we find inspirational.”
VICE - JAIMIE WARREN AT THE HOLE: EXCLUSIVE VICE PREVIEW
HUFFINGTON POST - Meet The Photographer Who Will Save Us From Art World Snobbery
The Hole is proud to present the third solo exhibition at the gallery by Holton Rower that is unlike anything you have seen him do before. Too Many Ideas looks like a group show by one person: the artist will exhibit a panoply of artworks in Gallery 3, none of which are his most “signature” type, all of which will be new to the public.
The exhibition is like a glimpse into the artist’s studio where his hyperactive, creative mind is constantly testing out new strategies and materials. Fighting against the pressure on an artist to develop their “brand” by making works within a narrow and accepted mode, Holton has always pursued many different media and approaches throughout his career regardless of his success in one style or another. This creative life where inspiration comes from all sides and takes so many forms is both celebrated here and encouraged of his audience, as Rower hopes putting himself “out there” so unreservedly will inspire others to take chances in their practice and in the gallery.
Not all of these works “work” in a conventional way. In the sense that most gallery shows include pieces that have been polished, primed and ready for the big time, this exhibition instead contains some works still working themselves out, rough around the edges or transitional. A masterpiece or not, every piece included shows something interesting about Rower’s practice, including perhaps the way his mind works. Many pieces look like they were produced by serendipity or opened up by chance while making something else. Some works mark the point where Rower reached the terminus of an idea and then came back around in the other direction. There is a sense in some works of triumph, some of futility or frustration, as Rower’s practice is founded on experimentation and lots of looking, thinking, and testing again.]]>