David Krut Projects\, New York\, is p leased to present an exhibition of William Kentridge's recent series of lin ocuts\, Universal Archive. These linocuts began as a series of sma ll ink drawings on pages of old dictionaries\, made using both old and new paintbrushes. They were created in a state described by Kentridge as “produ ctive procrastination\,” during the period when he was writing the text tha t would become the Norton Lectures\, delivered at Harvard University in ear ly 2012. The images are made up of both solid and very fine lines\, with an unconstrained virtuosity of mark-making. The ink drawings were initially a ttached to linoleum plates and painstakingly carved by the DKW printmakers and the artist’s studio assistants. As the project expanded\, the images we re photo-transferred to linoleum plates in order to preserve the original d rawings. The images have been printed onto pages from various books\, inclu ding early copies of the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary and Encyclopaedi a Britannica.


As a result of the meticulous mechanical translation of a gestural mark\, the linocuts push the boundaries of the characteristic s traditionally achieved by the medium. The identical replication of the ar tist’s free brush mark in the medium of linocut makes for unexpected nuance in mark\, in contrast with the heavier mark usually associated with this p rinting method. Furthermore\, the paper of the nonarchival old book pages r esists the ink\, which creates an appealing glossy glow on the surface of t he paper.


Many of the images are recurring themes in Kentridge’s ar t and stage productions: cats\, trees\, coffee pots\, nude figures. While s ome images are obvious\, others dissolve into abstracted forms suggestive o f Japanese Ukiyo-e painting. The parallel and displaced relationships that emerge between the image and the text on the pages relate to Kentridge’s in herent mistrust of certainty in creative processes. This becomes part of a project of unraveling master texts\, here questioning ideas of knowledge pr oduction and the construction of meaning. Aside from the numerous individua l images created\, there are prints assembled from pieces: cats torn from f our sheets\, a large tree created from 15 sheets. Groups of prints featurin g combinations of individual images – twelve coffee pots\, six birds and ni ne trees – show the artist’s progressive deconstruction of figurative image s into abstract collections of lines\, which nonetheless remain suggestive of the original form. This movement from figuration to abstraction and back \, along with the works’ close relationship to Kentridge’s stage production s\, suggests that this body of work holds an intriguing place in Kentridge’ s oeuvre on the edge of animation and printmaking.

LOCATION:David Krut Projects\,526 West 26th Street Floor 8\, Suite 816\nNew York\, NY 10001US SUMMARY: Universal Archive\, William Kentridge END:VEVENT END:VCALENDAR