work by JOE AMRHEIN, TAUBA AUERBACH, STEVE POWERS
exploring the physicality, psychology,aesthetics, politics and sociology of letterforms, words and signs.
Opens OCTOBER 15, 2005
Reception: 6– 9pm
music by Tussle
EXTENDED–THRU NOVEMBER 26, 2005
Gallery Hours: Wed-Saturday: 12-5pm
See also: Tauba Auerbach review Art in America Paper Magazine December 2005/January 2006
New York artist Joe AMRHEIN’S work is a combination of disciplines. Physically it comes out of painting, but the context is conceptual. Using text and font icons as the primary subject, the source for most of the text in this work is appropriated from critical art writing. Amrehinn sifts through these texts (primarily monthly periodicals like Artforum, Art in America, Flash Art, et cetera.) and pull out the hyperbolae; key phrases that try to elaborate on the where, when and how aspect of the art they are describing. Caught in the parameters of language and writing, these key phrases sometimes seem ridiculous, especially when taken out of context, One of the main reasons for using this kind of text to bring it back into the art making processmaking art from critical prose by critical pros. This language replaces the art it describesand brings the abstract notion of language back into a visual.
Quoting Robert Smithson, One must remember that writing on art replaces presence by absence by substituting the abstraction of language for the real thing.
Some of the text Amrhein composes is not meant to be read but is used almost as an artifact, because it is so highly fragmented. The use of sign painting to give this language scale and vitality comes out of Amrheins background as a sign painter.
Amhrein has painted an interactive word piece on the gallery walls and ceiling and on the window moulding. There is also a broken glass piece, a layered mylar text piece; and a site specific work on the front door.
Amhrein is the founder/director of the groundbreaking Pierogi Gallery in Wiliamsburg/Brooklyn, NY.
TAUBA AUERBACH Auerbach explores human constructed systems, matrices and the functionality of malfunction Auerbach believes that the various languages we use to encode our world in order to systematize it and make it manageable, consistently take on a life of its own and we often end up at its mercy.. The result is a pervasive disillusionment with the simulacra that we have ourselves manufactured and are mistaking for the real. Using primarily the written English languageand numbers, Quoting from Leah Ollman, LA Times (4/29/05), Auerbachs focus is on the consonance andfriction between the letters dual roles as images andbuilding blocks of meaning. Auerbach is showing large scale drawings and altered typewriters.
New York artist Powers creates paintings based on the visual marginalia of the world; T-shirt graphics, cartoons, religious tracts, advertising illustration, and graffiti. He uses these base elements of visual communication to depict the issues at the core of the human experience; Love, hate, desire, insecurity, jealousy, frustration and revelation are all encapsulated in a direct mode of communication Powers calls Emotional Response Icons. Powers painted icons reflect the overload zeitgeist, his paintings are full to the frames with a wide range of concerns, from regret to the ridiculous. He likens what he does to emotional cave painting, visually summing up humanity and relaying the summation in easy-to-grasp, easy-to-recall pictures.
Powers work at the luggage store consists of an installation of motorized cube paintings,enamel on powder coated steel; and a blow up limo and jacket.Part figurative, part sign painting, his work is
intended to evoke emotional distress signals.