In the narrowing chasm between rational and virtual architectures, the works of Jonathan Butt and Mernet Larsen provide a vertiginous perspective on the state of quotidian space. Made of wood, plaster, fabric, paint and modified furniture, Jonathan Butt’s sculptures struggle towards figurative self-realization while hosting the intersection of conflicting geometries. Atop plinths that resist the modernist norm, fenestrated surfaces define and erode amalgams of faintly recognizable shapes—imbuing the familiar relationship of sculpture and pedestal with vigor and unease. Rejecting a singular viewpoint, Mernet Larsen’s layered acrylic paintings comprehend vision as aggregate form. By relentlessly oscillating between the fulfillment and derailment of Cartesian expectation, Larsen depicts the institution as plural, subject to the liquidity of her representation. Both artists scrutinize the cognitive process of organizing space to reveal the chaos and discord from which it is built.
Jonathan Butt was born in Washington DC in 1975. He received a BFA from the Maryland Institute, College of Art and an MFA from the USC, Roski School of Fine Art. While in Los Angeles, he produced several bodies of work that explored conceptually driven narrative sculpture. Now living and working in Brooklyn, NY, Jonathan has continued his exploration of sculpture with greater emphasis on abstraction through raw material and fractured geometries. He is the founder of Factice LLC, a design firm that specializes in digital sculpting, imaging, and prototyping.
Mernet Larsen is Professor Emeritus of Painting at University of South Florida, where she taught for 35 years. She has had over 25 solo exhibitions, including recent solo shows at Marcia Wood Gallery (Atlanta) and Mindy Solomon Gallery (FL), a solo show at the New York Studio School in 2005 and a 25-year retrospective at the Deland (FL) Museum of Art in 1992. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Ringling Museum of Art, Tampa Museum of Art, The Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, FL, and numerous other public and private collections.
Images: Left: Jonathan Butt, Untitled, 2011, Wood, MDF, Hydrocal, yarn, paint, 60” x 21” x 21” Right: Mernet Larsen, Faculty Meeting, 2008, Acrylic, mixed media on canvas, 58” x 40”
Regina Rex is an artist-run exhibition space located at 1717 Troutman, in Ridgewood, Queens. We are open on Saturdays and Sundays, 12-6pm.
Directions: L train to Jefferson, exit, walking along Wyckoff to Troutman. Walk up (north) on Troutman two blocks, passing St. Nicholas and Cypress, to a large brick building on the left. Regina Rex is in suite #329.