Kevin Auzenne, untitled. Courtesy of Pluto.
pluto proudly presents Subtle Matter an exhibition featuring Kevin Auzenne and John Milton Ensor Parker, two Brooklyn-based artists who have known and influenced one another for the past 15 years.
Taken from the Buddhist concept of the links between mind and body, subtle matter is said to exist in the spaces between what is seen and what is not seen; mediating between what we see and hear and what we feel and experience as awareness. The abstractions of both artists seek to utilize this delicate gap between physical depiction and emotional response through the steady development of painterly laws and systems linked to the real, observable world.
The strategic use of materials is characteristic to both artists, and in his latest body of work, Parker employs sheets of aluminum left raw and inscribed with mathematical equations as a definitive, industrialized playing field—replete with rivet-like hex-bolts and multi-colored bands punctuating its surface. As a stark, contrasting element, Parker then drips and stains the pristine metal with various materials in an ode to fluid dynamic principles as not merely organic and contrary to its machined substrate, but more noble an aspiration to pursue. Through his background in mechanical engineering Parker actively engages a formal dialogue between what can be known scientifically and what is perhaps unknowable.
Having moved on from experiments with paintings on metal and plexi-glas, Auzenne’s current work on canvas steadily refines his on-going ‘Cascade paintings’ series. Begun in 2001, shortly after the attacks of September 11th, these dense collections of ink markings consistently pursue their own system of directionality. Conceived as a type of allegorical reference to our communal malaises (terrorism), Auzenne set his ‘communities’ into a suspended animation; the swarming trajectories of these colorful biomorphic signatures seem to be in a free-fall toward the bottom edge of the picture plane. Their respective ‘trails’ form as the puddled ink-
allowed to dry a bit-is swiped away. The combination of traces form a vibrant swathe of multi-layered tissues creating a kind of compendium of discrete ink layers, like the stratifications of the earth on land.
Subtle Matter marks the second joint-exhibition of the works of Kevin Auzenne and John Milton Ensor Parker. The first exhibition, Steady State, took place in Tallahassee, FL in December, 2005.