January 12, 2010

But what about Deitch Projects' artists?



Here are the artists listed on the Deitch Projects website (the info is out of date, but interesting nonetheless) with its descriptions (edited) of their work. Now that Jeff Deitch has officially accepted the directorship of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, vowed to close his gallery and sworn off art dealing, what will happen to these artists? Will they end up at new, equally prestigious galleries? Will he still quietly promote them despite the impropriety of doing so? Will other galleries eagerly snap them up to get an inside track on MoCA exhibitions...or will they steer clear? Will the lousy art market limit their opportunities? Will the artists fall off Deitch's radar as he discovers new up-and-comers? Will Josh Smith get a solo show at MoCA? Check out Art Fag City for a complete set of links to all the commentary on MoCA's controversial new hire.

Haluk Akakçe was born in Ankara, Turkey in 1970. He received a B.F.A. in Architecture at Bilkent University in Ankara and studied video and performance art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Writing about Akakçe in the January 2001 issue of Artforum, Douglas Fogle noted the “paradoxical sense of the future as a future anterior that pervades” his work. “Akakçe takes us through the looking glass,“ he continues, “into a world where the future is often yesterday and flatness manifests a new kind of depth.” Akakçe’s videos fuse painting, sculpture, architecture and sound in mesmerizing sequences of art historical and futuristic references. Akakçe has recently exhibited at Whitney Altria, and the Drawing Room in London.



Tauba Auerbach, "Shatter III," 2009, acrylic and glass on panel, 40 x 32"



Tauba Auerbach’s fascination with the origins of language, its break-downs and slippages especially, has led her to an artistic study of language qua gestalt. How does verbal language relate to the symbols used in written language, and do these symbols reveal anything about the structure of the human brain? How arbitrary are the marks, both analog and digital, used to express language, and where do they begin to muck it all up? Her answer, of course, is that they are largely arbitrary, but rich with abstract beauty and conceptual depth.

Kristin Baker, "Splitting Twilight," installation view.

Kristin Baker graduated from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and received a M.F.A. from Yale in 2002. Her work was presented in a solo exhibition at the MNAM Centre Pompidou in 2004. Deitch Projects presented her first solo exhibition, Flat Out, in September of 2003. Most recently she has been commissioned by the Denver Art Museum to create an artwork responding to the Daniel Libskind architecture.

Jonathan Borofsky, One of the "Five Large Paintings" series, installed at Deitch Projects on Grand Street in 2009

Jonathan Borofsky (jointly with Paula Cooper) is one of the most influential artists of his generation. His gallery and museum exhibitions in the 1970s and ‘80s redefined the way art was installed and experienced. During the past fifteen years, Borofsky has concentrated on public sculpture and has produced over thirty large-scale works for public settings in cities around the world.

Puerto Rican artist Dzine has straddled the thin line between the auditory and the visual, whose two forms of artistic expression have a strong interrelation. His articulation of sound takes on various fluid abstract forms, with vivid colors, patterns and textures unleashing a visual punk/funk/psychedelic energy that cause his paintings and site-specific wall installations to vibrate with rhythm. Recently, Dzine’s practice has explored the artistic expression used by Chicano Lowrider culture.

E.V. Day had a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum at Altria in 2001, where she installed G-Force, a work in which she suspended hundreds of thongs from the ceiling in fighter jet formations. Day had a ten-year survey exhibition in 2004 at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University for which a color catalogue was produced. E.V. Day’s exhibition Intergalactic Installations was on view at the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum in the spring and summer of 2006, and then appeared at Art Basel Miami Beach.

FISCHERSPOONER is an ongoing project about entertainment and spectacle. Its first incarnation was a two-person, low-fi electro-pop performance by Warren Fischer and Casey Spooner at a Starbucks coffee shop in New York City. From this humble beginning, FISCHERSPOONER has evolved into an elaborate combination of elements associated with pop entertainment. Music, performance, dance, fashion, film, design, photography and the Internet are all tools that FISCHERSPOONER uses to fabricate its illusion of glamour and popularity.


Matt Greene, "The Membrane," 2009, collage, acrylic and oil on canvas,
96 x 96"


Known for his ethereal landscapes of fleshy fungi and bushy bombshells, Matt Greene explores his favorite shelves in the library: horticulture, vintage pornography, horror films, fairy tales, 19th Century Symbolist art, and of course the history of Modernism. These disparate interests—and the weighty themes of gender, sexuality, and epistemology that accompany them—Greene masterfully approaches in a hallucinatory, visionary manner allowing them to come together in phantasmagoric splendor on his canvases.



Evan Gruzis, "Self Portrait As A Self Portrait," 2009, acrylic, oil and digital print on canvas, 49.8175 x 36"


Evan Gruzis creates a New Wave Noir world through his complexly layered ink paintings. With the sardonic wit of Wayfarer-toting Brett Easton Ellis, and a unique technique of manipulating inks to keep you guessing, Gruzis’ work sticks with you like a half-remembered name or intangible word. His figures often appear as layer upon layer of ink splatter building up to the illusion of form. What you see is often only half there, or mockingly not there at all. His mirrors, Venetian blinds, drop shadows, palm trees and other pop paraphernalia may remain aloof, but compel us to examine the way we look at looking.

The Estate of Keith Haring

Noritoshi Hirakawa: "Although sexuality is non-institutional, it possesses at the same time a quality found both within and without institutional life. In our institutional lives, this quality produces a division of the human being into two images: the one public and the other private. When the private image, one's own sexual attraction, is censored in the public realm, while at the same time printed information about a person from familiar surroundings is provided in place of the missing criteria, the question arises as to how the observer would react to the new image of the person. The result is quite possibly the temptation to establish a personal relationship with the person if the observer has the means with which to deal with the censorship on his own."


Jim Isermann’s twenty-five years of art practice have fixated on the exchange of visual information between high art and post war industrial design. While his influences certainly include Op Art, “supergraphics” and mid-century interior design, Isermann is an artist more in the tradition of a Renaissance architect--using simplicity, elegance, industry, and economy to chase utopian ideals of harmonious form and mathematical proportion.

Asked about the motivation behind his art, Chris Johanson responds that "life is about looking at and being a part of life. We need to be a part of each other. If we separate we are alone. That is a world of walking dead people. That is why I make art, to talk about how important it is to stay in the now and look at life." Johanson believes that life is a series of actions and projects. That is why he makes many things in many media: painting, sculpture, installation, film, video, music, writing, bands. He likes to collaborate with friends and strangers. Johanson explains that he likes to look at the little pictures in life as well as the big picture. A smile is just as important to him as a cosmic question about the nature of god.

Brad Kahlhamer fuses an exuberant embrace of expressionist painting with the visionary tradition of Native American art. Drawing from country western and the Native American rock music scene, the artist’s visionary landscapes swirl with an atavistic energy; the paintings seem to have a sound that accompanies their visual rhythm. The great American bald eagle sweeps though the paintings almost as a surrogate for the artist, representing his immersion into his personal American landscape. Kahlhamer has created his own world in these paintings mixing representations of the real into a visionary “third place,” as the artist describes it.



Kurt Kauper, "Derek,"2007, oil on birch panel, 93 x 58 1/2 x 1 7/8"

Kurt Kauper’s work was shown at the Whitney Biennial in the spring and summer of 2000, and appeared concurrently with his exhibition Diva Fictions at Deitch Projects. In 2007 Deitch presented Kauper's nude portraits of old Boston Bruins hockey stars.

Jon Kessler was born in Yonkers, NY in 1957. He received a BFA from SUNY Purchase and attended the Whitney Independent Study Program. The Palace at 4 a.m., a site-specific installation was on view at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center from October 23, 2005 through February 6, 2006.

"Robert Lazzarini’s sculptures are at once rigorously formal and intensely expressive. As distorted versions of familiar objects, they appear in the process of slipping- from three to two dimensions, from realism to abstraction, from this world to the next. Products of a dense and innovative process, his works seem both real and unreal: their striking immediacy is belied by a quality of ghostliness, as if they were hardly there at all." - John B. Ravenal, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, VMFA, 2004.

Fusing together found and invented imagery, tags and assorted objects Barry McGee draws on a range of influences including the Mexican muralists, tramp art, the graffiti artists of the 70’s and 80’s and the San Francisco Beat poets to create a unique visual language. The work has the strong immediately recognizable visual signature of the best graffiti art, but is also enormously poetic and evocative. It communicates the artist’s strong empathy with people who have been left behind by contemporary society. Also known by his street name, twist, Barry McGee has a large following in the street art community.

"In the past decade, Ryan McGinness has become an art star, thanks to his Warholian mix of pop iconography and silk-screening.”—New York Times
“McGinness is God.”—Metropolis





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