he Temptation To Exist (May Contain Nuts) marks a notable evolution in Friedrich Kunath’s practice into a matured exploration of abstraction, interior sensation, and oppositional relationships that propel emotional experience. On the heels of a comprehensive monograph entitled In My Room, and a series of institutional exhibitions, Andrea Rosen Gallery is delighted to announce Kunath’s fourth solo exhibition with the gallery.
Inextricably entwining the experience of the ordinary with the sublime, Kunath’s works jump between daydreams and “reality,” painterly surface and psychological interior. Through heightening the artifice and the sincerity of the narrative, both are shown to be essential. Playfully pushing every element to the limit of its emotionality and capacity for meaning, Kunath reveals the deflative qualities of a climax, and simultaneously suggests that certain new truths can be revealed through, as the writer David Berman describes, “knowing which dimension of an uninteresting thing is actually interesting.” The act is an embrace of existence – both vibrant and mundane. An invitation into a perpetual joke.
Within the landscape of the exhibition, one is met first with nostalgia, and then, as though slipping into a fever dream, invited to wander the juxtaposed realms of past and future, elegance and decay, the bucolic and the strange. The images build upon themselves in a layered stream of consciousness driven by the autobiographical, the conceptual and the emotional. Here, elements individually familiar, in unison, now propose a kaleidoscopic view of reality.
“Somewhere in these oppositions lies the aesthetic possibility of slipping on a banana peel” – Friedrich Kunath
“Too late for fruit, too soon for flowers” – Walter de la Mare
Friedrich Kunath was born in Chemnitz, Germany, in 1974, and currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California. His exhibition Friedrich Kunath: A Plan to Follow Summer Around the World, is currently on view at the Centre d'art contemporain d'Ivry - le Crédac through March 23rd, 2014, and a forthcoming exhibition at the Kunsthalle Bremerhaven, Bremerhaven, Germany, will be on view from September 16 – November 2, 2014. Recent solo shows include Modern Art Oxford, Oxford (2012), Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin (2011), Hammer Art Museum, Los Angeles (2010), the Kunstverein Hannover (2009), and the Aspen Art Museum (2008). Kunath was included in the 55th Carnegie International, Pittsburg. He is a recipient of the Peter Mertes Stipendium, Bonner Kunstverein, Germany (2001) and the Jürgen Ponto-Foundation Stipend, Frankfurt (2005).