September 27, 2007
Conner Contemporary Art at Pulse LONDON
Drawing Cabinet: new works by Erik Sandberg, Avish Khebrehzadeh and Zoë Charlton
October 11-14, 2007
Conner Contemporary Art is delighted to present Drawing Cabinet, an exhibition of new works by gallery artists Erik Sandberg, Avish Khebrehzadeh and Zoë Charlton at the inaugural edition of Pulse London, October 11-14, 2007.
This contemporary collector’s cabinet features recent drawings created by three accomplished artists working in individual pictorial modes. Each demonstrates his or her skillful handling of line in works that explore conscience, memory and identity construction. Emphasizing masterful drawing as a fundamental element of their art, Sandberg, Khebrehzadeh and Charlton reaffirm the historical significance of artistic virtuosity.
Erik Sandberg will exhibit the first drawings he has created as presentation works, "Glutt her Maw," "Cruelty" and "Patience," rendered in graphite and gouache. A selection of Sandberg’s colored pencil working studies for multi-figure paintings on panel and large-scale single-figure paintings on canvas and panel will also be shown. Sandberg creates realistic imagery based on observation of live models, construing behavioral compulsions and aberrations as mirrors of human vice. In Art Papers (Feb./Mar. 2007) George Howell remarked on a series of the artist’s life-sized figural paintings, “His new work’s format demands the kind of exhibition space found in museums, but are these institutions interested in allegorical realism? Certainly, they should be interested in Erik Sandberg’s.” This presentation of domestically-scaled drawings provides an unprecedented opportunity for collectors to engage intimately with works that manifest Sandberg’s initial artistic responses to his models and reveal previously undisclosed stages of his creative process.
Avish Khebrehzadeh elides video animation with drawing on paper in a new installation created for Pulse London. The artist’s poetic sensibilities stem from childhood memories of the underground art movement in post-Revolution Tehran and from her studies in Rome, where she absorbed the essential simplicity of Giotto’s paintings and the reductive visual language of Arté Povera. In the video animation A Swim, she draws inspiration from a figure removing his robe in the background of Piero della Francesco’s 15th c. Baptism of Christ. This gesture, unfolding in the context of water, encapsulates the depth and fluidity of a moment frozen in time. In the animation she captures the universality of this concept by setting an isolated figure in motion through an expansive body of water. Projecting the swimmer’s symbolic journey through life onto Family with Dog, a large-scale graphite drawing with varnish washes, Khebrehzadeh evokes shared experiences and calls forth layers of personal memory. In 2003, Khebrehzadeh won the prestigious Lion D’or at the Venice Biennale. Upcoming exhibitions include a solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Rome Italy opening November 16, 2007 and Emotional Drawing at the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo,Japan/Fall 2008.
In her most recent series, Floaties, Zoë Charlton exaggerates physical features of male and female African-American models to problematize race and sexuality. This new series stems from her recent works in video where her models were asked to wear various floatation devices. Working in a large format with a free, gestural line, the artist portrays her subjects in provocative poses with greater anatomical detail than in her previous works, emphasizing her regard for line and form. In Floaties, Charlton punctuates her graphite drawings with vibrant gouache pigments, accentuating accessories that function playfully as attributes of racial stereotypes. The artist’s work was recently seen in Frequency at The Studio Museum of Harlem, New York, NY. Upcoming exhibitions include: Saint of the Suburbs at the University of North Texas opening October 2007 and Black Women Artists and the Moving Image at Spellman College, Atlanta, GA in January 2008.
Erik Sandberg and Avish Khebrehzadeh will be in attendance at Pulse London on opening day.