The Jawbone and the Air around it
The Kristi Engle Gallery is proud to present new works by sculptor, Christian Tedeschi. " The Jawbone and the Air around it" is an exhibition that consists of two parts. The first you see as you enter the space: 3 feet-plus twin discs, mounted on a 4 feet-high pole, consisting of a rich blood red and black plastic that extends at its edges into spindly, hairy spikes. These shapes were created by pouring liquid plastic resin over the two wire brushes fitted to a bench grinder. As the plastic set, the machine was turned on. Several pours were needed to achieve the final shape and size, further evidenced by the excess frozen flow and puddle of candy-like plastic on the floor, along with the long double-splatter line that extends along the floor and up the walls. The discs are a frozen trace of this process, a marker of both personal industry and kinetic energy. As Tedeschi explains, he wishes to freeze motion, like photography, as if to capture an aura that surrounds things. It's important to note that energy can't be seen in and of itself. As it can only be evidenced as a trace affected upon other material, energy shares the mystical properties of the spirit world.
The second part of the show features several objects which were formed by binding, alternately, baseball catcher's equipment, a nurse's scrubs, a businessman's suit and the artist's own studio clothes. As a counterpoint to the frenzy of "Bench grinder", these apparel sets are frozen stiff (using clear plastic resin) in a state of rest, or sometimes even a static blob. These are compressed figures in which energy is bundled, bound and intensified. The liquid plastic appears here again as a kind of permeating ectoplasm - the hum of energy, transubstantiated.
The title of the show derives from a doctor's explanation why the artist heard a rush of air when he moved his jaw. An ear infection was to blame, but the interconnection between ear and jaw held a certain poetry for the artist, as did the experience itself of air being sucked in and pushed out thanks to some deep mechanical mystery. The doctor's diagnosis also spoke to Tedeschi's intuitive approach in assembling otherwise disparate things to uncover surprising connections. "The Jawbone and the Air around it" is Tedeschi's exploration of the yin and yang of energy - expansion/contraction, compression/release, subtractive/additive - that is suggestive of a connecting force tying together the stuff of common experience. Tedeschi's art employs a grammar of process upon a poetry of objects.
Christian Tedeschi received an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2001 and since 2008 he's been based in Los Angeles. Tedeschi's work has been exhibited in several galleries in the LA area including solo shows at Haus, Woodbury University and in group shows at the Torrence Museum of Art, the Claremont Graduate University, Happy Lion as well as cities beyond including Dallas, Detroit, Boston, New York and Berlin. Tedeschi currently teaches sculpture at Cal State Northridge. This is his first solo show at Kristi Engle Gallery.