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GRIMM is pleased to return to Art Rotterdam.

Since 2004, Charles Avery (UK, 1973) has dedicated himself to the invention of an imaginary island, new corners of which he continues to chart through drawings, sculptures, texts, ephemera and (more rarely) 16mm animations and live incursions into our own world. Known only as ‘the Island’, Avery’s wave-lapped realm is not only a vividly realised fiction, teeming with sights both strange and strangely familiar, it also operates as a petri dish in which the artist tests ideas from the fields of epistemology, aesthetics, mathematics, economics, anthropology, architecture, and beyond. For example in the large painting Untitled (It Means It Means; Beuys, Square Gasket), he dipicted Joseph Beuys giving a lecture about his 1964 ‘action’ Das Schweigen von Marcel Duchamp wird überbewertet.

Matthias Weischer’s (DE, 1973) investigation into the depiction of three-dimensional space is of great importance in his work. He ignores the laws of classical perspective and rather dictates his own. Weischer applies collage-like painted elements andbuilds on imagery that is as diverse as wallpaper motives, mosaic floors,windows sills, pieces of furniture, loose bricks or part walls, and the occasional reference to a figure or element in settings that range from desolate rooms to lush fields in the countryside. In doing so, Weischer’s special painting technique plays a distinctive part. Like a mason, he constructs his pictures with paint, layer over layer, literally building the image on the canvas.

In his sculptures, paintings, installations, prints and video works, Matthew Day Jackson (US, 1974) investigates the fatal attraction of the frontier. His images of physical and mental stress stem from the edges of human experience in the age of technology. Addressing the myth of the American Dream, the artist explores the forces of creation, growth, transcendence and death in dramatic visions of a failed utopia. His art obsesses over specific objects and moments made totemic by their part in (American) history -whether military, Utopian, counter-cultural, scientific, artistic or automotive- and translates those same objects and moments into exquisitely crafted sculptures and wall-based works that play their own role in a private and tangled narrative.

With Approaching American Abstraction from the series Gunshot Plywood Bronze Works he explores our ongoing capacity for destruction. The artist explains:

“At the very core of American Identity is the subject of value founded in the idea of property ownership and the ability to defend oneself and said property. The single-family home and the firearm are two great metrics to determine the value of the individual in American culture. It might also be noted that violence is a language, and one that is deeply imbedded in western culture, in its technology, in its diplomacy, in its civil law, in its institutions, in its history. The reminder of this is founded in the seemingly constant barrage of mass shootings and of police killing unarmed black men. […] Plywood is structural and functions as a facial layer and is the surface upon which our reality is affixed. It supports our ideas of ourselves, and in the case of these sculptures it is a framing device lying at the intersection of ownership and violence, two primary lenses through which America sees the world and itself. Bronze is the material of the memorial, or the statue. I think of these as American Statues, memorials to hopefully being understood in the future as the way we were.”

Earth from Space depicts the first picture of the earth, taken on December 7, 1972, as the Apollo 17 crew left Earth’s orbit for the moon. It is silkscreened on Cor-Ten steel, which makes the work balance between painting and sculpture.

Alex Dordoy (UK, 1985) explores a central characteristic of 21st-century visual culture: the restlessness of the image, and the instability of the surfaces on which it manifests. The painting Paris is based on a travel poster for Air France, by Guy Georget, late 50. The image has been edited and simplified, with all signs of human habitation removed. Figuration breaks down into abstraction. Flat areas and fades jostle with fluid painterly marks. The past and the present exist in the same space. Romantic yet cold, the mechanically handled acrylic disintegrates into block colour on closer viewing. It is an image of eternally deferred satisfaction.

Over the past years Desiree Dolron (NL, 1963) has been working on a soon to be published series called ‘Raven’, documenting her daughter from birth to the teenager she currently is. On view at Art Rotterdam is the first photograph from this series, showing an intimate moment between mother and child. Dolron will continue to work on this project while her girl is gradually becoming a woman.

William Monk’s (UK, 1977) scenographic works tap into the rich tradition of painting. Monk paints enigmatic and vibrant works, using starkly divisional compositions. He investigates the application of various techniques on one canvas, showing brushstrokes that remind of Les Nabis, pointillism and symbolism. Monk often works in extensive series that gradually evolve over time. The canvases carry irregular intensities of detail, line, foreground and background. They are large abstracted colour fields with only hints of figuration left on the surface.


Works

L’homme (scene de nuit)

Dave McDermott

2011

Yarn, 23k gold, archival pigment print, linen, charcoal and oil on panel

166.7 x 121.9 cm | 65 5/8 x 48 in

The Boob

Dave McDermott

2016

Oil, wax, 23k gold, canvas, yarn on panel

35.5 x 28 cm | 14 x 11 in

Paris

Alex Dordoy

2018

Acrylic on canvas

200 x 120 cm | 78 3/4 x 47 1/4 in


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