Spatial fragmentation has been a common visual and perspectival theme in literature and art since the twentieth century. As a concept, it is an expression of untamable chaos and seemingly random chance happenings. It is also strongly evocative of the harrowing and disorienting experience of being hopelessly lost in non-cultural, hostile landscapes untouched by human influence and order—a type of wilderness in itself.
Even for those who wish to control this disorder by, for example, placing it in a framework or a repository, there always remains the possibility of the container being shattered. These “vessels” alternate between empty or potently hyper-charged spaces. If the contents of the artwork appear unsealed, there is a precarious, indeterminate chance they will bleed out of their confines, overtaking their surrounding environment.
The difference between controlled and uncontrolled disorder evaporates, and the observer finds themselves in a space of pure equilibrium between these two extremes. Ironically, this ensnares the viewer in what they perceive as an unsettling and crushingly deterministic situation— that is to say, one which is malevolent and demonic, with every coincidence interpreted as a threat, spilling over with meaning extrapolated from paranoia and unease.
Even for those who wish to control this disorder by, for example, placing it in a framework or a repository, there always remains the possibility of the container being shattered. Each artist featured within this group exhibition contends with and/or attempts to capture this type of raw, irrepressible energy within their work.
"Wildernesses" will be on view at Peninsula Art Space from July 14th- August 18th, 2019.