29 April – 15 May 2020
Ákos Ezer, Carter Flachbarth, Julio Anaya Cabanding, Max Rumbol, Marta Galindo García, Philip Gerald, Tarmac and Yulia Iosilzon.
It’s been 5 years already! The 27th of March marked our fifth anniversary and we want to thank our friends, artists, collectors and media for their support over the years. However, rather than reviewing the past we are going to show a glimpse of the next 5 years with the 5 YEARS exhibition, bringing together a young group of artists with a fresh take on contemporary painting. Influenced by the digital age and the ever-expanding approaches to painting, these artists are portraying new forms of expression and the ways in which pop culture, the internet and social relationships are depicted not only aesthetically but conceptually in contemporary painting.
The main protagonists of Akos Ezer (Budapest, Hungary 1989) characterize male persons with elongated limbs and bent postures, whose gestural movements remind of moments of falling. The surreal representations of the bodies often take up the entire picture surface and form a geometric frame in their linearity. The different personalities, marked by contemporary and pop-cultural clothing, as well as the pastel colour palette used, offer a humorous approach to Ezer’s pictorial world without trivialising it. Akos invites the viewer to reconstruct his view of current social structures in his home country Hungary and the personal efforts of everyday life associated with them.
Carter Flachbarth (Atlanta, United States 1996) is a painter that draws on his personal experiences in the 21st century to créate mixed media imaginery. Carter objectiviley records his daily life through drawings and writtings. Then, using an app he developed, the drawn experiences are collaged and manipulated into a single image. With this information, Carter challenges the way we understand technology by allowing the app tp be the creator and himself to be the tool. His work is inspired by the idea of the individual as it relates to a digital user experience and a curiosity to explore his own individuality and objectivity through algorithmic processes.
The practice of Marta Galindo García (Puerto de Santa María, Spain 1993) investigates the supersaturation of digital images, the cybernetic trash aesthetic and the prosumer profile. She uses humor and irony as a strategy against contemporary problems and the anarchic juxtaposition of information from the digital medium. Marta is interested in the proliferation of the aestheticized image in the capitalist system and the relocation and resignification of the digital surplus in new artistic contexts. Aesthetics and digital phenomena in their own medium are not too noticeable, they get jumbled and dissipated in automatic content flows. Her work translates the digital into the physical format, interrupting the chain of images on the web to reveal and highlight the dynamics of the network culture.
There is an undoubtful admiration and respect for timeless art masterpieces but there is also a feeling of distance between the common people and such accomplished work. And that familiar space is where Julio Anaya Cabanding (Málaga, España 1987) creates his interventions and paintings. «Freeing» such pieces from the museum collections and «hanging» them in the most unexpected, regularly abandoned and forgotten places, he developed an unprecedented discourse for the two antipodes. Not creating replicas, but playing with the setting in which the famed picture is displayed to the general public, the Malaga-based artist proposes an alternative way of looking and experiencing fine art.
With an interest primarily in the British landscape and British tradition, Max Rumbol (Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom 1997) combines elements from both the natural world and tropes of British culture to create striking digital compositions which are then reinvented as paintings or sculptures. These works are usually constructed using a mix of painting and laser cut relief elements, to create objects which sit somewhere in-between sculptures and paintings. This notion of creating a sculpture which looks to masquerade as a painting is inspired by the mass reproductions of artworks that look to imitate paintings. Max likes to refer to these often mundane works of art as “Wetherspoons paintings”; the kind of artworks that are so reproduced they become unanimously inoffensive and thus enter mainstream popular culture. These reproductions usually function as wall decor over art, fulfilling the role of innocuous decoration within British homes and businesses.
Philip Gerald (Dublin, Ireland 1992) works comprise provocative thematic presentation with naïve painting, in which he picks up art historical works with modern means by using Microsoft Paint. He examines and thus questions recurrent themes such as sexuality, consumer society and self – staging nowadays. The subtly – painted images depict figures and scenarios embedded in images of humour and anxiety.
Tarmac – Niccolo Binda (Milan, Italy 1996) work explores notions of nostalgia, branding, consumerism and how we form connections with and begin to covet or fetishize cultural artefacts. The pieces question how a symbol or a logo can attain a cult status and how people relate to branding. By using vaguely recognisable symbols and industrial manufacturing processes, the works achieve a similar kind of resonance to that of a popular brand or iconic children’s toy. Taking inspiration from high fashion, streetwear, design and the urban environment Tarmac creates art which captures the feeling of a buying a new sneaker. The works have a cool, fresh, clean and happy surface. However, underneath the polished veneer he examines ideas of desire in a consumerist system. The idea that we are exposed to so much information, imagery and things to buy, and all we are really doing is selecting and arranging pre-made components into a lifestyle.
Yulia Iosilzon (Tel Aviv, Israel 1992) draws on fragmentary narratives, persistent duality between text and subtext, clarity and opaqueness, rendered through form in the use of transparent fabric. Yulia’s work is born from an inherent interest in the narrative – of stories anecdotally told and retold, fables proliferated and propaganda through word of mouth and fairy tales passed down from generation to generation. It is snippets and snapshots of these histories that are captured and immortalised in her paintings, removed from their original context and often reduced to, or solely recognisable by, their base emblems or characters.