Dualities, Omissions, Loops, & Ruptures
Luis De Jesus Los Angeles is very pleased to announce "Dualities, Omissions, Loops, and Ruptures: Chris Engman, Cody Trepte, Samantha Roth, and John Houck", an exhibition of four LA-based artists on view at the gallery from March 3 through April 7, 2012. An artists' reception will be held on Saturday, March 3rd, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.
"Dualities, Omissions, Loops, and Ruptures" navigates between photography, film, drawing, print, and sculpture in order to explore ideas that play with paradox vis-a-vis constructed realities (a place, time, object, thought or dream, etc.) and notions of psychological and emotional dualities (i.e., grandeur and the ordinary, reason and absurdity, struggle and futility, illusion and disillusionment, etc.). The exhibition juxtaposes these four artists' interest in linguistics and narrative, appropriated and mediated imagery, time and spatial perception, content and context, and how meaning is constructed and understood against the fluid dynamics of abstraction and representation.
Chris Engman's work takes the human condition as its central theme and examines the most fundamental of issues: the inexplicable fact of our existence, the ungraspable experience of time, and the illusive and unknowable nature of reality. His work calls attention to our misperceptions - the gulf that exists between how we see and how we think, and how we think we see and think we think - and the inconstant and constructed nature of memory. Engman's photographs aim to speak to the passage of time closer to how it is actually experienced. Days are spent erecting structures and sets and studying the slow progress of the sun overhead and its precise movements. They are documentations of sculptures and installations as well as records of actions and elaborate processes - acts of reverence and participation in a deep, reassuring natural order outside of and much larger than himself.
Working primarily in drawing, printmaking and photography, Cody Trepte's work looks to an alternate articulation of time, one that is both frozen and repeating. His new work, comprised of silkscreen and xerographic prints and a projected 16mm film loop, literally recedes into, and emerges from, the artifacts of its own production. The 16mm projection is a 10 second loop of the artist's father standing against a decorative cinder block wall tightly cropped so that only his mid-section is visible. The subject's movements are slight and repeat ad infinitum, an attempt to capture in some way the reality of his progressive illness. The work explores the threshold of visibility, repeating but never fully revealing itself. Lost in the noise, it inhabits a space between concealment and that which hasn't yet been completely rendered, slowly revealing new sets of questions or inquiry over time.
Samantha Roth's investigations focus on drawings that consider time and material in relationship to an idea or representation. Her practice examines drawings that exist between a plan or diagram and a trace or object, perpetually oscillating between ideas of interior/exterior, infinite/finite, and repeatedly returning to a notion of a doubling or echo. The pieces suggest the process of working out an idea, as well as the impossibility of pinpointing the moment of this occurring. Referencing formal visual solutions mined from the everyday, matched with explorations of language and its' peculiarities and structures, the works straddle their function with their making; their utility with their poeticism, their tactility with their flatness, and display some method of process that allows an unfolding of making and meaning to occur.
John Houck explores the mediated image through layered photo-based works that function as both image and object. His Aggregates attempt to create desire that resists a world consumed with highly repetitive things through a combination of physical intervention and reprinting. Using custom written software, Houck generates every possible combination for a given grid printed as an index print on photographic paper. These index sheets are then creased and re-photographed several times. This process creates layered borders that reveal the construction of each piece and adds its own layer of information, breaking the rigid system of the grid. By physically creasing and re-photographing these repetitive contact sheets, Houck reconciles the digital ground of photography and shows us the failures and ruptures in today's algorithmic basis of photography.
Chris Engman received a BFA in photography from the University of Washington in 2003, and is currently an MFA candidate (2013) at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. He has exhibited at Claire Gallery, Munich; Project B, Milan; Seattle Art Museum, Henry Art Gallery, Greg Kucera Gallery, and SOIL, all in Seattle; Texas State University, San Marcos; and Luis De Jesus Los Angeles. Cody Trepte received a BFA from New York University in 2005 and an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in 2010. He has exhibited at Eleven Rivington and White Box in New York; Workspace and Steve Turner Contemporary in Los Angeles; Austin Museum of Art; Weatherspoon Art Museum; Centro di Cultura Contemporanea Strozzina, Florence; and Kunstverein INGAN, Berlin.
Samantha Roth earned a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University in 2003 and MFA from the University of Southern California in 2010. She has exhibited at Annie Wharton, AT1 Project Space and Workspace 2601 in Los Angeles; Newspace Gallery, Sydney; and Bezalel Gallery, Tel Aviv. John Houck earned a BA in architecture at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and an MFA from UCLA in 2007, and also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program, and the Mountain School of Arts. He has exhibited at Tony Wight Gallery, Chicago; Kate Werble Gallery, Regina Rex, and The Kitchen, New York; Franklin Art Works, Minneapolis; Workspace 2601 and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach; and Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.