On view through Saturday at DTLA’s 10,000 sq ft. arts complex Wərkärtz is a two-man exhibition provoking questions of time, space, semantics, and the authorship of the viewing experience. Curated by head artist liaison and Wərkärtz studio resident, Shelley Holcomb, there is nothing happening above us features new site-specific works by LA based artists Jason Burgess and Páll Haukur. At a cross-section of semiotics, the works of these artists attain an intuitive child-like playfulness through unexpected variations in scale, material, and color, while the substance of their representations exists far beyond.
On a horizontal plane suspended just below eye level, lies Jason Burgess’ installation The Grove, a weightless sea of multicolored foam orbs stretching across the interior space. In slow rotation, The Grove quietly animates the adjacent backdrop of Burgess’ paintings, like extraterrestrial clouds in a hanging garden. The usual staticity of the typical gallery setting—with work level among four white walls, framing the boxed-in viewer to encounter each work like a mirror— is cleverly eradicated throughout the exhibition. Like Burgess’ work, Haukur’s freestanding ‘clusters’ incorporating drawing, video, sculpture, and found objects, invite discovery— drawing us up-close and to the floor. Weaving through the subconscious maze of Haukur’s compositions, lie traces of Aristotle, Baudrillard, and a hand contemplating ‘meening.’
Haukur’s constructs are less inert objects than material situations produced from the accumulation of codes activated through an interplay of the personal and the political; the subjective and the objective; the signifier and the signified. Shifting through perspectives and narrative, I sift through vestiges of references to texts, images, and abjection as I move about the algorithms of Haukur’s mad scientist schematics and Burgess’ floating landscapes. Here, in the sewage of my own private simulacrum— littered with art school academia, Clement Greenberg, and Hegel— I hear Lacan…”what is repeated, in fact, is always something that occurs…as if by chance.” Press Release.
there is nothing happening above us
works from Jason Burgess and Páll Haukur | curated by Shelley Holcomb
on view through Saturday, June 21st
Wərkärtz / Studio / Los Angeles
767 S Alameda, Building 2 #100 | Los Angeles, CA 90021
Map | located in DTLA’s Arts District next to the American Apparel factory