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Abraham Cruzvillegas, Andrea Lehmann and Simone Lucas, Sculpture and Painting

Tilton Gallery
8 East 76th Street, 212-737-2221
Upper East Side
February 16 - March 24, 2007
Reception: Friday, February 16, 6 - 8 PM
Web Site

Abraham Cruzvillegas creates challenging sculptures out of ordinary objects by altering and combining his materials in unpredictable ways. For this exhibition he will create works made specifically for the Tilton space with objects he encounters while constructing the work in New York. For the past fifteen years this artist, based in Mexico City, has taken detritus as diverse as bones, knives, bowling balls, shells, and cactus leaves to make work that imaginatively assembles the flotsam and jetsam of everyday life into sculptures that can be both witty and unsettling. For the current exhibition, the artist uses texts both poetry and prose authors ranging from Chang Tzu to William Carlos Williams, as his guide in approaching concrete reality. In these works, both hanging sculptures and wall pieces, Cruzvillegas bricollages of fragments respond subjectively to personal experience, embodying in their materiality a sense of instability and impermanence. Cruzvillegas has shown his work extensively in Mexico and the U.S., and had a solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago in 2005. He showed in/participated in the Mexican pavilion of the 2003 Venice Biennale.

Andrea Lehmann, Dusseldorf-based painter born in 1975, combines images from popular culture with her own vivid imagination. In her first solo New York exhibition, Lehmann will exhibit Kill the Copy, a dramatic installation that features women in the midst of multi-media recording technology. The painting’s four large panels form an open chamber or stage upon which the complex narrative unfolds. Women based on the artist’s own likeness, clad in either virginal white frocks or foreboding black-hooded robes, seem to struggle for dominance in their techno-saturated environment. In the background, images of female figures spill across the canvas, reduced to images on a screen like multiple alter egos. Kill the Copy can be read as a cryptic allegory of the media’s power to enslave, as well as the hope for personal liberation. The artist has recently exhibited her work in The Triumph of Painting at The Saatchi Gallery in London and at the Rubell Family Collection in Miami, and is represented in Dusseldorf by the Anna Klinkhammer Gallery.

Simone Lucas, born in Neuss, Germany in 1973, paints scenes of adolescent young women with a sensitive directness and bathes them in a shimmering sensation/impression of light. Although they are not portraits, these paintings embody a real awareness of the artist endeavoring to faithfully transcribe her vision of girlhood on the cusp of maturity. In Lucas’s recent work, her young women are observed in poses that imply a range of inner states, from questioning alertness to somnambulant repose. A striking image sets a girl with tensely outstretched arms against what seem to be a painted backdrop, perhaps on a theater stage. She both casts a shadow on and stands within the stormy scene depicted behind her. That sense of a painting’s dual nature, simultaneously a physical fact and an emotionally convincing illusion, is at the heart of Lucas’ work. In another affecting painting, a teenage girl sits at a piano, her quizzical expression specific yet unreadable. Behind her is a grisaille field of gestural, washy brush strokes. As if drenched in an atmosphere thick with emotion, the piano reflects the girl’s image. The critic Hans Bergen Lechtreck has called this play of light on mirror and reflective surfaces, part of kaleidoscope of painterly sensations, an expression of Lucas’s concern with the act of perception itself.
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