Wilkinson Gallery is pleased to announce a solo exhibition of new works by Martina Steckholzer (Upper Gallery).
In the last few years abstract painting has returned to the fore as a viable aspect to contemporary art discourse. For today’spractitioner of abstraction, the clash of histories is a built-in mediator for new posits. Gone is the angst-ridden he-manromantic visionary battling demons in pursuit of the great gestural exhortation.
Updated in the social climate of a new decade where media and its technology platforms offer easy and fast visual stimulus,abstraction deconstructs the unending layers of representation. Forsaking concrete worldly images, abstraction none-the less leaves a residue of those constructs within the space/time framework.
Idiosyncratic and free form, the new series of abstract paintings by Martina Steckholzer are a departure from earlier hard edged works culled from self-made video footage of architectural spaces. While she still mines the hidden structuralelements of utilitarian objects, sculptures, and architectural details, her paintings have shifted more towards nonreferentiality.
Dispensing with a diagrammatically controlled formalism Steckholzer now employs a rapid-fire improvisation. Remixinghistorical precedent with contemporary strategies that distill information overload her paintings are more of a process art.Still present, the geometric grid’s rigid structure has been pulled apart at the seams and subsumed through overlappingforms.
External stimulus acts as a catalyst while subjective considerations allow her to remain open to moments of epiphany or‘happy mistakes’. Conveying this ambient immediacy the paintings are teeming with bright fluorescent colors (suggesting a latent Pop) contrasted nicely by atonal shifts, neutral palettes, and gestural bursts of spray-paint.
Such ungainly, playful juxtapositions take on a life of their own even as forms bleed into and out of each other, and order ismade from chaos. Color, line, and mark-making bend and twist in size and scale boldly asserting their sensorial impact uponthe viewer.
Martina Steckholzer studied at Freie Kunstschule Stuttgart, Germany and Acdemy of Fine Arts Vienna, Austria. Recentsolo exhibitions include Galerie Meyer Kainer, Vienna (2010) and Stadtgalerie Schwaz, Austria (2009). Recent groupexhibitions include ‘Passion fruits picked from the Olbricht Collection’, me Collectors Room, Berlin; ‘How to be a player –Gregor Eldarb & Martina Steckholzer’, Galerie Stadtpark (2009); ‘Peripheral Vision and Collective Body’, MUSEION,Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Bolzano, Italy (2008).
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