Josée Bienvenu Gallery is pleased to present Invisible Ghost, Aaron Wexler’s second one-person exhibition in New York. Aaron Wexler operates within a complex matrix of acrylic and paper collage on panel. The mat acrylic surfaces of his paintings are incised and peeled away to reveal playful dreamscapes of free association. Wound together, the pictures float in and out of focus and illusory space while simultaneously denoting the flatness of their plane and materiality. Fractal and prismatic, his paintings are carefully constructed, the surfaces collaged with a myriad of cut shapes, a complex puzzle of figure and ground. His work synthesizes abstraction and figuration, physical and psychological space, optimism and anxiety. It is imbued with a fragile equilibrium of opposites.
He often uses the sense of a dreamscape as a way of annexing the language of abstraction and employs subtle opposites (guns and flowers, the organic and geometric) as a way of paraphrasing the language of the subconscious. His imagery is nuanced and layered, vaguely familiar and yet strangely enigmatic. While visually dexterous, Wexler’s work is also inescapably material and object-like. The collage technique is nuanced and layered, vaguely elusive and strangely reductive. Layers are built up in order to subtract from the overall image and create voids in the landscape of the imagery. Other areas use graphic injections of colour to define positive and negative outlined shapes.
While adopting a classic ‘cut and paste’ approach to collage, Wexler’s work also carries a seamlessness equally redolent of digitized media. In his most recent work, cut-and-paste is more than a mere methodology or exercise in formal aesthetics and instead becomes a lens through which the artist first fractures and then reconstitutes the natural order of things. He may have inherited the discipline of modernist image-making, but he disregards its orthodoxy. Eyes, insects and architecture are all worthy catalysts for his projects. His subject matter shifts rapidly, but a deep focus unifies the images. Wexler renews one of modern art’s most meaningful histories – that of the active spectator.
Aaron Wexler was born in 1974 in Philadelphia; he lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He received his M.F.A from the School of The Art Institute of Chicago in 1999. Selected solo exhibitions include: Use Your Indoor Voice, One In The Other Gallery, London, UK (2008) and Mind Over Matter, Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, NY (2006). Recent group exhibitions include: 1968-2008 The Culture of Collage, Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York, NY, traveling to Zoeller Gallery at Penn State University, PA (2008); Twilight Musings, One In The Other Gallery, London, UK (2007); 181st Annual Invitational Exhibition of Contemporary Art, The National Academy Museum, New York, NY (2006); The New Collage, Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York, NY (2006); Puzzle Palace, Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York (2004); Some Exhaust, Lehmann Maupin, New York (2004); The Day After I Destroyed The Women I Wished I Had Not Destroyed The Women, 5BE Oliver Kamm Gallery, New York (2004). His work is featured in the catalogue for the forthcoming exhibition ABSTRACT AMERICA: NEW PAINTING AND SCULPTURE, at The Saatchi Gallery in London.