We want to see some light. The artist's works supply the viewer with an interpretation of belief: he proposes a provocative course of action that asks whether his works of art can somehow simultaneously represent and render coherent all of the universe's systems of belief. He creates sculptural drawings and images that abstract from popular culture.
We want to see some light
"We want to see some light," a seemingly hopeful utterance, is rendered large on Ritchie's lightbox installed in the gallery's front window. Ritchie's works typically supply the viewer with an interpretation of belief: he proposes a provocative and ambitious course of action that asks whether his works of art can somehow simultaneously represent and render coherent all of the universe's systems of belief.
For this show, Ritchie continues his engagement, creating sculptural drawings and images that, in addition to referencing or relating to systems of thought, also abstract from popular culture. While each work may appear disconnected from each other, a meta-narrative links the pieces, supplying a seemingly complete story. As a result of this insistence on completion, the totalizing story is often tinged with biblical overtones: the exhibition title, for instance, recalls the heavenly utterance, "Let There Be Light."
One of the works in the Portikus gallery is the result of a workshop held with students of Frankfurt's StÃ¤delschule. In this workshop, Ritchie asked, "Is it possible to construct a viable visualization system that includes all relevant points of reference for a modern human life?" He probed further, asking "Would such a system be imprisoning, or liberating?" The StÃ¤delschule artists responded with characteristic enthusiasm, turning a seemingly daunting task into a conceptual and thoughtful drawing deployed as the framework for this piece.
Having worked as a building superintendent for many years, Ritchie re-entered the New York art scene with a show in 1995, exhibiting a work that engaged with processes of mapping and systems of thought. He has exhibited regularly since then, including having a solo show at the White Cube gallery in London, exhibiting at the Whitney Biennial and having a show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
We would like to thank C/O - Atle Gerhardsen Gallery in Berlin and Andrea Rosen Gallery in New York for their kind support in the preparation of this exhibition.
Portikus im Leinwandhaus
Weckmarkt 17 - Frankfurt am Main