“A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five!” Groucho Marx
Turning the art world topsy turvy, Purple Nurples & Peekaboos inverts contemporary artistic strivings and goes in pursuit of absurdity. Opening at the Arts Gallery on 17 March, Purple Nurples & Peekaboos presents five international artists who take a wry look at futility and laugh with equal measure at sense and nonsense.
Curator Medeia Cohan-Petrolino comments: “Irony is a familiar strategy in contemporary fine art practice but the humour in Purple Nurples & Peekaboos tickles in a different way. This exhibition brings together a group of artists whose visual and material language articulates the absurd. Themes of bathos, futility and farce run throughout the work presented.”
The exhibiting artists are University of the Arts London alumni Ronnie Yarisal and Katja Kublitz, Maurice Citron, Simon Linington and Janina Anja Lange, graduates of Chelsea, Central Saint Martins and Wimbledon Colleges.
Yarisal and Kublitz’s observations of contemporary life and provocative punning titles aim to elicit the sheer joy and laugh out loud humour inherent in recognizing the absurdity of modern existence. The artists’ sculptures DOMESTICATION and video works Drama Queen, Suicide, and Watering-Can & Plant are equally “a celebration of momentum and a reminder of the unbearable fragility of the moment."
Lange’s simple watercolour paintings revel in the ludicrous and contrary. Her new body of work for this exhibition presents scenes from an absurdist domestic Olympics, a blissful submersion into the pleasure of the visceral engagement of materiality.
Citron’s joyful, witty, cheeky, teasing sculptures play on wildly descriptive and ridiculous scenes and bodily humour. They include pieces such as Dirty Filthy Little Fecker, an abstract piece constructed from an incongruous collection of latex, spandex, plaster, faux furs, found objects and clothes rails.
In his work, Linington attempts to perform physical activities that confront physical limitations, and test the artist’s human and artistic failings. In Linington’s vision success is possible, but the possibility of failure is more likely. For Purple Nurples & Peekaboos, Linington presents Putting on all my Black Clothes in which the artist attempts to wear all his black clothes at once.