Marine Contemporary is pleased to present, Tender is the Night, a group exhibition curated by Emily Sills, presenting the works of Sam Knowles, Rachel Hovnanian, Polixeni Papapetrou, Allie Pohl, Christine Rebet, Katy Stone, and Frank Zadlo. In a long line of appropriation, this show takes its cue from F. Scott Fitzgerald, who borrowed the line as the title for his novel from John Keat’s poem “Ode to a Nightingale.”
True to both the novel and poem, this show embodies images of desire and transfiguration. Tender is the Night brings together works that transmute surface, exposing a suspicious underbelly that lies beneath the urge to transform. Blurring the lines between allure and disgust, creation and recreation, the artists explore the juxtaposition of beauty and metamorphosis in the journey to elevate beyond the natural form.
Sam Knowles is interested in the systems and structures that inform our understanding of the world. In his work, the meta-narratives of science, philosophy and art become relics of universal truth. By recreating and reconstructing the painted gold-leaf and collaged pages of old science and history books, Knowles manipulates the objects, transforming the pages and therefore their value and meaning. Sam Knowles received a BA in Fine Art at Wimbledon College of Art. He currently lives and works in London, UK.
Rachel Hovnanian is known for her ongoing exploration of deep stereotypes as they pertain to female beauty and the public illusions of beauty. In her photographic series, the artist examines the culture of beauty and “trophy beauty” as powerful symbols of contemporary values. In works such as “The Collector,” the woman meets her final goal of beauty. She has transformed as the ultimate trophy wife and is perched on her husband’s mantel. Rachel Hovnanian lives and works in New York City. She studied at the National Academy of Design, NY, The Art Students League, NY, Parsons School of Design, NY and received her BFA from the University of Texas.
Polixeni Papapetrou explores the world of the uncanny, through her hybridization of human and animal portraits. Papapetrou treds the line between fantasy/reality, mythology/archetype, male/female, and child/adult. Within this liminal state, the characters live between a world of child-like innocence and animalistic sexuality.Papapetrou lives and works in Melbourne, Australia. She has received a PhD fromMonash University, and a MFA in Media Arts from Melbourne University, Australia.
Allie Pohl’s “Ideal Woman” highlights the projections of perfection and how these projections operate in our lives. In her current series, she uses the Barbie doll toy, digitally enhancing her to greater perfection by fitting her into the socially constructed ideal female measurements of 36-24-36. Pohl satirically re-creates commercially packaged versions of beauty as a way to confront its social constructs. Allie Pohl is based in Los Angeles. She received a BA from Hamilton College, NY, an Associate of Applied Science in graphic design from Parsons School of Design, NY and her MFA in Electronic Media Arts & Design from the University of Denver, CO.
Christine Rebet’s hand-drawn animations (shot on 16mm/35mm film) restage the optical illusions and spiritual experiments of the late 19th-century, pre-cinematic entertainment landscape. Underscoring similar deceptive devices in contemporary politics and media, Rebet's works are enigmatic, surrealistic explorations. Through her animations, Rebet unlocks the unconscious mind of her characters, unraveling hidden truths in order to better understand the imagination of each story. Rebet was raised in Lyon, France, but currently lives and works in New York. She studied painting at the Venice Academy, received a BA in Scenography from Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design in London, UK and her MFA in Visual Art at Columbia University, NY.
Katy Stone’s cut-out paintings on archival plastic film, paper, and metal, are manifestations of natural forms. These delicate installations capture a kind of monumentality and fragility. Her work, a combination of dark and light, expresses an urge for liberation and alteration. Their exuberance and beauty shadow a longing: the desire for things to last and perhaps, a wish against decay. Stone has exhibited nationally and internationally. She received her MFA in Painting from the University of Washington and is currently based in Seattle, WA.
Frank Zadlo makes time-based collage, using an economy of means to create visual resonance. He morphs classical and historical images by using the pre-embedded meaning within imagery and then focusing on the gestures of placement, arrangement, and orientation of each visual component. Zadlo’s goal is to find the balance between visual intuitions and the pleasure derived from the promiscuity of images, forms, and historical references. Frank Zadlo received his MFA from Parsons School of Design in New York, NY. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.