Artists: Thomas Lawson, Alexej Meschtschanow, Jesse Mockrin, Marijn Van Kreij
Exhibition title: Endless Lows, Breaking High
Venue: Rolando Anselmi (in collaboration with Klemm’s), Berlin, Germany
Date: June 27 – August 30, 2020
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists, Rolando Anselmi, Berlin/Rome and Klemm’s, Berlin
Galerie Rolando Anselmi is pleased to present Endless Lows, Breaking High, realized in collaboration with Klemm’s, combining a selection of international artists whose practice investigate the elements that inform a critical reflection on the purpose of art within our contemporary culture. The works gathered in the show manifest their common ground in one of the fundamental questions raised by the art practice: how the art production can be understood as an activity of social and political meaning, able to recast and reformulate cultural identity. Thomas Lawson opens up to this position since the late 1970s, emerging as part of The Pictures Generation, embracing media imagery and pop-culture references within a post-modernist approach. Lawson, for this series from the early 1980s, draws his subjects from tragedies reported on newspapers, magazines and mass media. Decontextualizing photographs of people who have committed crimes, he exposes the insensitivity of conditioned responses to spectacularization, conferring highly political undertones to his works. Through sculpture and installation, Alexej Meschtschanow examines the strength and inevitability of established social conventions within cultural identity. Assembling found objects, forsaken furniture and archival photography, he examines our social environment and the blindly driven urge for optimization. Marijn Van Kreij practice moves in a theoretical horizon, questioning the ambiguous status of the image by exploring the blurred boundaries between representation and abstraction. His rapid sketches, apparently random doodles and scribblings, are clustered with textual fragments, attempting to reconcile spontaneity and chance within a conceptual frameworks. His graphic language resonate with ideas about globalization and virtual networks, where the distinctions between high and low culture become hazy and the dissemination of images is instant and almost infinite. Jesse Mockrin draws her subjects, together with her formal language, from art historical sources, actualizing mythological figures and signs. Assortments of bodies, often cut at the canvases’ edges, emerge form black backgrounds, understanding contemporary figurative painting as a way to question and disrupt widely accepted cultural tenets.