The impetus for the exhibition is a comparison between two artists with a very different practice. Jonathan Parsons and Markus Linnenbrink. Parsons at his last show at New Art Projects explored color by expanding the palette of color theory and creating a series of works that questioned it. Linnenbrink often uses a photographic base to his works and then imposes color on top or creates a flawless surface, which he then drills into to reveal layers of contrasting color poured beneath.
Markus Linnenbrink also explores and extends ‘process painting’. Included in this exhibition is a rare sculpture by the artist that has been made during a five-year period of his studio practice. Linnenbrink placed a Perspex box, which acts as a mold under his painting wall that has collected the drips of paint from his works. The drips build up into a layered “time line” of his studio practice.
They are joined by an international group of artists who explore both color and abstraction in a multitude of different ways: Adrian Esparza pulls colored threads between nails driven into perfect white frames to create geometric webs of color that play off each other. Joachim Grommek creates a flawless surface of enamel that resembles a painter’s process, areas appear ‘masked off’ and edges are pristine. Jan van der Ploeg uses acrylic to make formal abstractions where a repeated shape contrasts color across flat rendered canvasses. Markus Weggenmann creates a less formal surface; stepping away from a human gesture the paintings seem poured onto the surface in enamel or distemper, creating luscious pools of color. Beat Zoderer moves beyond a flat canvas by shaping and constructing aluminum coated with enamel into shapes that extend the boundaries of painting.
Together these artists constitute an in depth survey of contemporary abstraction that is being made in a multitude of different ways employing differing mediums and methods. Installed at New Art Projects the works play off each other in new and inventive ways, creating fresh dialogs about surface the human mark and color.