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Natural Obsessions

Neuhoff Gallery
41 East 57th Street, (The Fuller Building), 212-838-1122
May 1 - June 24, 2008
Reception: Thursday, May 1, 6 - 8 PM
Web Site

From the repetitive mark-making of Katy Stone to the deceptive technique of Stefan Sehler, each artist included in this exhibition begins with nature as inspiration—but the works are far from typical landscapes. Each artist demonstrates a methodology that is unique unto themselves and the work that emerges from these methods is surprisingly subversive. More than twenty works in varying media by Vlatka Horvat, Stefan Sehler, Katy Stone, Mary Temple and Karin Waisman will be on view

Vlatka Horvat will contribute six photographs from her “Here to Stay” series. Created during walks in upstate New York, Horvat used petals and leaves to write “here to stay” on the ground. Returning to each site over the course of 5 weeks, Horvat attempted to repair the damage caused in her absence, ultimately an act of futility which resulted in a series of intimate,I ronic and poignant photographs.

The works of Mary Temple and of Stefan Sehler rely on the viewer’s past memories and experiences to establish sly deceptions. At first glance, Sehler’s work appears to be large-scale landscape photography due to his elaborate methodology that actually hides the painted surface from the viewer. It’s only upon close examination that the viewer realizes that nature isn’t as it should be and attempts to understand these pieces.

Mary Temple will be contributing a site-specific painting to the exhibition along with photo-collages that were the precursor to her recent work. Her painting is at its most successful when the viewer experiences ordinary daylight rather than art. She paints directly onto the existing architecture, mimicking natural sunlight as filtered through tree branches and leaves. She places her installations in areas where the shadows and light are impossible, relying on the viewer’s past experiences with light and space to complete her work.

The works of Katy Stone and Karin Waisman each begin with repetitive organic forms. Both artists’ work hovers somewhere between 2D and 3D and brings to mind splendor and decay simultaneously. Stone’s work is often multi-layered, either on duralar or more recently, steel. Her previously vibrant palette is more muted in her newest work, tending toward shades of black, white, gray and brown. The effect is to highlight the forms themselves, along with the shadows they cast. Karin Waisman’s cast-resin wall sculpture is made up of similar, repetitive organic forms created from small molds and then assembled together as large reliefs. Vines meander, seemingly to infinity, inextricably linked with no beginning or end.
Have photos of this show? Tag them with artcal-6913 to see them here.