Philipp Timischl at Martos Gallery

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Artist: Philipp Timischl

Exhibition title: Good From Afar / Far From Good

Venue: Martos Gallery, Los Angeles, US

Date: September 11 – October 17, 2015

Photography: images copyright courtesy of the artist and Martos Gallery, Los Angeles

We all feel a bit of responsibility but not too much responsibility
Full­time Adult
Open for discussion
Gay Divorce
Symbol Luxury Excellent Industry Material Basic
Just do it normal. (masc)
Just do it normal. (vanilla)
Just do it normal. (t4b)
A class apart Jack looking up

Martos Gallery is pleased to present Good From Afar / Far From Good, a solo exhibition by Philipp Timischl. For this exhibition Timischl continues to explore ways that narratives unfold across multiple media platforms. His sculptures and wall works often weave together a vocabulary of painting, photography and cinema (or more specifically, television) to play with histories of the rectangular frame. Drawing comparisons between the painted canvas and the flat screen, Timischl’s sculptures investigate the unique qualities and capabilities of old and new media. The exhibition title borrows from RuPaul’s Drag Race – Quoting a line in which contestant Latrice Royale comments on her flawed makeup, Timischl applies the phrase to topics such as queerness and contemporary gay culture and their reception in mainstream media.

On two monitors at the entrance of the gallery, drag queens perform as seductive bouncers, aggressively judging incoming visitors. Inside, ten canvases are hung low on the wall above a cream-colored carpet, forcing the viewer to squat or bend over for a closer look. For these wall works, Timischl pours epoxy resin on areas of raw canvas before overlaying an array of photographic imagery. Printed on the uneven surface, images appear to hover over the canvas. The ink at times sinks more deeply into the woven fabric. Seeming to move from the canvas to the screen and back again, stills from popular TV shows such as Lost and Six Feet Under, as well as self-portraiture and snapshots of the artist’s friends become elements of a fragmented drama. Images have been cropped, filtered and scattered across various interfaces, forming a mutated storyboard.

Timischl’s patchwork narrative alludes to a reliance on heteronormative terminology and traditions, even as expanded concepts of gender and sexuality are being explored in mainstream media. In one work entitled, “Just do it normal. (masc),” 2015, an unidentified person wears an earring brandishing the text, “masc.” An abbreviation for “masculine,” masc is one term in a shorthand often used to indicate one’s preferred “type” of gay partner in online dating. Invoking charged innuendos yet letting the overall scenario remain ambiguous, Timischl reminds us of how we are constantly invited to build identities and relationships through repeatedly performing sets of historically mediated expressions. However, with an inundation of references and frameworks to endlessly recombine, the artist keeps things complicated.

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Philipp Timischl, Good From Afar, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Far From Good, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, We all feel a bit of responsibility but not too much responsibility, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Fulltime Adult, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Open for discussion, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Gay Divorce, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Just do it normal. (masc), 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Just do it normal. (vanilla), 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Symbol Luxury Excellent Industry Material Basic, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, A class apart, 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Just do it normal. (t4b), 2015

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Philipp Timischl, Jack looking up, 2015

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