The artists included in the show use various approaches to explore representation, experimenting with sources, forms and techniques, employing repetition, abstraction, velocity and fragmentation as tools to escape realism whilst tending towards an accurate depiction of the world.
Sam Austen, Agnieszka Brzezanska, Ryan Foerster, Gabriel Hartley, Israel Lund, Marco Palmieri, Hannah Perry, Max Ruf
Curated by Attilia Fattori Franchini
Paradise Row is pleased to present The Instability of the Image a group show reflecting on the idea of representation in contemporary art practices.
Digital culture has transformed images into a currency capable of questioning economic systems and power structures. The increasing availability of devices to look at the world has contributed to the creation of a set of new relationships between visual culture and materiality. The power of perception - technological and personal has been destabilised, challenging the way we absorb and portray our surroundings.
The artists included in the show use various approaches to explore representation, experimenting with sources, forms and techniques, employing repetition, abstraction, velocity and fragmentation as artistic tools to escape realism whilst tending towards an accurate depiction of the world.
A text by Francesca Gavin will accompany the exhibition:
Back in the technological dark ages of 1995, Paul Virilio published an article warning of the effects of technology on human reality. He described what was then a threatening new phenomenon—a fundamental loss of orientation. ‘A duplication of sensible reality, into reality and virtuality, is in the making. A stereo-reality of sorts threatens. A total loss of the bearings of the individual looms large... This is precisely what is being threatened by cyberspace and instantaneous, globalized information flows. What lies ahead is a disturbance in the perception of what reality is; it is a shock, a mental concussion.’ (Speed and Information: Cyberspace Alarm!, 1995)
Over a decade later, we are now living in the centre of this moment of flux. The artists in this exhibition are a product of an age of velocity. Individuals working across mediums but linked by a speed of production or movement. These artists reflect a hyper- modern reconfiguration of time that makes the twentieth century seem almost primitive.
There is an obvious rise of abstraction in work produced by this generation of artists. These are images that lack clarity, that dissolve, that fall apart, that have no structure. Bringing these artists together raises the question—if we no longer see the world in figurative, structured, real forms then what are we seeing?
The answer perhaps is a perception of reality rather than a description of it. A feeling or sense of time. The concept of feeling or sensation in any sense perhaps jars with a world based on screens and digital information. Emotion is a dirty word in art these days. Yet this discomfort feels apt as a way to reflect the uneasiness with our place ‘in real life’. (The idea of IRL in contrast to the virtual is the ultimate contemporary construction).
These artworks are created with a great emphasis on chance or speed or repetition. Art made by processes of addition and removal, layering and cutting, flickering and slipperiness. Process itself has an element of time inbuilt in its construction. In this age of the unstable image, time perhaps is the only thing we can hold on to. Something concrete that can be measured, documented and reflected in printing, editing, set building, painting and film. Something that can be a foothold to re-orientate us in a time of disturbed reality.
Image: Sam Austen, Hell Screen, film still, 2013
For further information, please contact: Khuroum Bukhari T: +44 (0)207 6369355 email@example.com
Private view: Thursday 18 July 2013, 7-9pm
74a Newman Street London W1T 3DB
Gallery hours: Tue—Sat / 11am – 7pm