Matthew Day Jackson. Courtesy of Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery.
Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery is pleased to present Drawings from Tlön, an installation of two-dimensional works by Matthew Day Jackson, running from September 13 to October 18, 2008. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, September 13, from 6-8 pm.
In alluding to Jorge Luis Borges’ short fiction Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius, Jackson challenges us to think about the way collective imagination can create reality. For the artist, ideas left festering in the mind take on the materiality of human organs, weighted with the gravity of associations just as a heart becomes heavy or a stomach full.
As a storyteller of parables and warnings, Jackson blurs worlds of truth and fiction throughout the gallery. He builds art from the ephemera of cumulative experience while underscoring cloaked relationships between images and objects. In one piece, an inverted astronaut explores an underworld rather than starry heavens. Looming above, the Art Workers Coalition‘s landmark protest poster of the My Lai massacre lays bare the link between exploration and destruction. At another turn, a hybridized x-ray of Jackson’s body and Evel Knievel’s pulverized bones captures the idea of mortality. Positioned in the arid Trinity detonation site of Alamogordo, New Mexico, the piece not only speaks to man’s imprint on the land but also to the effect of that occupation.
Connecting domination with discovery, failed utopias with boundless dreams, Jackson’s installation reconfigures the framework of our mental history, asking us to confront the intertwined mythologies of our psychological and physical landscapes.