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Scott Ingram & Charles LaBelle

Anna Kustera Gallery
520 West 21st Street, 212-989-0082
March 26 - May 1, 2010
Reception: Friday, March 26, 6 - 8 PM
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Anna Kustera is pleased to present the work of Scott Ingram and Charles LaBelle in a two-person exhibition. This will be the first major showing of Ingram’s work in New York and LaBelle’s second exhibition at the gallery.

Scott Ingram’s mixed media drawings and photo collages explore the relationships between modern art, architecture and the iconic decorative objects of the era of modernism. Many of the works have been completed on book pages torn from exhibition catalogs, sketch books, and luxurious coffee table books. He “re-draws” on reproductions of Ellsworth Kelly’s work, paints over parts of a classic modern home or cuts into the windows of a postcard depicting an I.M. Pei building. Ingram’s interest lies in the discourse of modernist ideas via innovative presentations of conventional materials and conceptual approach.

Scott Ingram (b.1968 in Drumright, Oklahoma) has exhibited widely in the US and Europe, most recently at Solomon Projects in Atlanta, Georgia. His work has been reviewed nationally in, Art in America, Art Papers, and Creative Loafing. Ingram lives and works in Atlanta, GA.

For the past twenty years, Charles LaBelle’s work has explored both the geographic and social space of the city. After working in a variety of media for most of his career, as of 2007, LaBelle has devoted himself to a single, on-going project called ‘Buildings Entered’ in which the artist documents every building he physically entered since 1997. Photographing the buildings only once before he enters them, and recording the date, time and the location, LaBelle then enters the information and image into an electronic database. Currently, there are over eleven thousand buildings in the archive. The photographs are never shown but are used as the source material for drawings done in watercolor and graphite and on sheets of paper ranging in size. Conceptual in nature, the project is both a diary and a historical document in which the artist’s own life and the space of the world intersect. By foregrounding the act of “entering” these buildings, LaBelle’s project reveals a broader, phenomenological framework: one that investigates the relationship between architecture and the body, between urban space and the construction of the subject. 

In his recent series, ‘Archaeologies of the Future’, LaBelle documents every new building he entered between the period of May 9th and June 1st, 2009, during a road-trip around the South-West United States. The intricate graphite drawings are rendered on the actual pages of the book the artist read during the trip, Archaeologies of the Future: The Desire Called Utopia and Other Science Fictions by Fredric Jameson. There are a total of 268 drawings on 215 notated book pages, some are double-sided. Most of the text has been whited out thus creating a quality of a palimpsest, in which the original text and LaBelle’s annotations are faintly visible behind the drawing itself. Starting and ending in Las Vegas, the trip took the form of a wide loop through Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Nevada. In the end, the entire trip resulted in: 6520 miles, 268 buildings entered, 53 cities or towns visited, 20 beds slept in, 4 natural wonders (The Grand Canyon, White Sands, Monument Valley, Arches National Park), 4 speeding tickets, 3 Utopias (Arcosanti, Earthship, D.H. Lawrence’s “Ranamin”), 2 land art sites (The Lightning Field and Spiral Jetty), 2 bad Hollywood summer movies (Terminator Salvation and Star Trek), 1 flat tire, 1 bee sting.

Charles LaBelle (b.1964 in Dearborn, Michigan) received his undergraduate degree from UCLA in 1988. He later went on to do graduate work at the prestigious UCLA film school before leaving to pursue art full time in 1990. Exhibited widely both in the United States and abroad, LaBelle’s work has been seen most recently at the Neuberger Museum, New York; Blue Lotus Gallery and Para/Site in Hong Kong; Artist’s Space, New York; Art Pace, San Antonio, Texas; Chisenhale Gallery, London; and The San Jose Museum of Art. LaBelle lives and works in Hong Kong.
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