Approximately 2,5 billion years ago, accelerated photosynthesis amongst early life forms led to increased levels of available oxygen, whereas previously only small quantities of free oxygen (O2) existed in the earth’s atmosphere.
The new abundance of oxygen was initially absorbed by minerals in the early oceans, most notably in the form of oxidized iron. Once those metals became fully oxidized, the remaining free oxygen began to release into the atmosphere.
This led to the so-called “Oxygen Catastrophe” – fatal for early methane-based life forms. Occurrences of 'mass-rusting' in the oceans deposited banded iron formations, amassing the largest iron ore resources of today.
The exhibition "Rost" debuts 9 works painted with water on pulverized iron applied to canvas. The technique continues Daniel Lergon's formal practice of painting with transparent, non-pigmented media on loaded surfaces, his use of water in this case encouraging the iron to oxidize.
Until recently, Lergon’s practice explored the physical potential of light and reflection upon surface, applying transparent varnishes to a variety of light-sensitive fabrics.
Lergon’s intervention has now transitioned to a chemical modulation of the surface, signaling a deviation from his former interpretations that manifested the physical properties of light.
Daniel Lergon (b. 1978, DE) was educated at the Universität der Künste in Berlin under Lothar Baumgarten. He has been exhibited widely in Europe, with recent solo exhibitions in Stockholm, Vienna, Paris, and Cologne. His work will be highlighted in the forthcoming 3rd edition of the “Meditations Biennale” in Poznan, Poland – opening September 14th.