Steinpilz, Grids and Glorias
frosch&portmann is pleased to present Steinpilz, Grids and Glorias, a group exhibition with David Hayward, Charles Ladson, Patricia Satterlee and Ellen Siebers.
Steinpilz, Grids and Glorias brings together four artists whose paintings call attention to the natural flatness of the canvas. The acknowledgment of the two-dimensional surface in the early 20th century moved the focus away from creating visual depth of perspective to the act of painting itself. The works shown appreciate this modern phenomenon and steer our perception to the properties of the forms on the flat support. Even if seemingly flat and nonrepresentational, the artists here also show that there is no absolute flatness or non-objectiveness.
"The first mark made on a canvas destroys its literal and utter flatness, and the result of the marks made on it by an artist like Mondrian is still a kind of illusion that suggests a kind of third dimension."
—Clement Greenberg, (Modernist Painting 1960)
New York and Washington D.C. based David Hayward’s small-scale paintings are drawn from an intuitive process in which he invents, borrows, and discovers what resonates with him. Basic forms dominate the artist's vocabulary and the pursuit to understand the visual workings of his complex and multilayered formations is what is most intriguing and rewarding about David Hayward's oeuvre.
Charles Ladson’s (Georgia) surreal compositions are the result of a constant re-working and layering process. "My work is a culmination of ideas, movements, commitments and random occurrences that have been saved (wholly or partially) or deleted all together. The paintings ramble along in all directions never knowing where they are going and then they arrive. The content comes intuitively from this process and is more ambiguous than any deliberate attempt at commentary.”
Patricia Satterlee, living and working in New York, finished her Gloria series in 2012. As the paintings developed, they took on a strong sense of voluptuousness. The name “Gloria” attached itself as the group was being finished, a remembrance of one of those common names that has fallen out of favor. It's the power of the dame and the glory of robust passion.
“Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine” —Patti Smith, Gloria
Ellen Siebers' (New York) recent paintings on panel, treated with gesso to mimic the surface of plaster, are subtle in color and dominated by checkered and grid-like structures. Her process involves a mental rehearsal of visual experiences; lately, the artist has been thinking about the human body and its relationship to relics and heirlooms and the grid. Siebers sees her challenge in making a moment or set of circumstances stand alone in painting language.
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