Opening reception: Friday, January 22, 6–8pm
Blum & Poe is pleased to announce Two Worlds, an exhibition of new work by American artist Matt Saunders. This is his third solo show with the gallery and his first solo presentation in Tokyo.
Matt Saunders continues his forays into the boundaries between painting and other media. Inspired by film and moving images—their ineluctable materiality and capacity for projection and uncanny return—the artist debuts two new interrelated bodies of work: a multi-screen animated film and new “paintings” in the form of unique photographic prints.
Designed specifically for the gallery space, Two Worlds (2015) is a vivid, fast-moving projection onto two screens that reflects on the ways video can both define and exceed its bounds. The video is composed of thousands of drawings, both narrative and abstract, made using materials that range from pencil to ink to oil. Derived from a broad catalog of sources, such as experimental film, West German television and internet clips, the drawings blot from one to the next, or else move through mirroring, allusion, and metonymy into a loose, almost narrative cycle. The screens catch the images imperfectly, as the projection extends to incorporate the room and the gallery’s large window, with its own slow-moving view over trees of the Meiji Shrine gardens.
Saunders’ photographs are made by exposing paper to light shone through paintings, a technique he has used in various ways for the past several years. The resulting unique prints transpose the materials and processes of painting into the fleeting, time-based realm of the darkroom. In his newest works, Saunders delves further into this practice and binds it more closely to the moving-image work, often using drawings from the animation—essentially now handmade color filters—as part of the light source to expose the paintings. These two worlds map together in dynamic, unpredictable ways.
Matt Saunders was born in 1975 in Tacoma, WA. He earned his MFA at Yale University in 2002 he has since divided his time between Berlin and Cambridge, MA. Saunders has had recent solo exhibitions at the Tate Liverpool (2012) and the Renaissance Society in Chicago (2010). Selected group exhibitions include Cinema & Painting, Adam Art Gallery, Wellington, New Zealand (2014); Test Pattern, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (2013); The Anxiety of Photography, Aspen Art Museum, CO (2011); Sharjah Biennial 10, United Arab Emirates (2011); Passageworks: Contemporary Art from the Collection, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA (2008); and Freeway Balconies, Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin (2008).