LUIS DE JESUS LOS ANGELES
ART BRUSSELS 2012
APRIL 18 – 22, 2012
“REMAINS” AND “RUNAWAY”
FRENCH VERSION / EN FRANÇAIS
FLEMISH VERSION / IN DE VLAAMSE
Ghost Shipwreck, 2012
Unique scratched digital pigment print mounted on Sintra
40 x 60 in / 101.6 x 152.4 cm
Courtesy of Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
LUIS DE JESUS LOS ANGELES is pleased to announce our participation in ART BRUSSELS 2012, STAND 3D-43, April 18 – 22, with a solo presentation of new works by CHRISTOPHER RUSSELL.
Christopher Russell employs photography, drawing, writing, bookmaking, and digital printmaking to create all-encompassing environments that challenge the traditional divide between these practices and expand the very idea of a book. In his trademark style, Russell wrote and produced a unique, one-of-a-kind storybook, titled “Remains”, that combines intricate original drawings and hand-lettered text scripted by the artist. Russell's text uses Nicephore Niépce and H.P. Blavatsky as characters in an historical fiction that explores chance as an intervening force against the claim of exceptionalism. In "Remains", the occult emerges as a metaphor for protest, while the "death of photography" becomes an allegory of systems rigged to fail.
The book informs a separate group of digitally manipulated photographs scratched into with intricate and elaborate drawings, a process that uses an X-acto knife to remove the top image layer of the print, creating a contrast between the plastic surface of the photograph and the fuzzy texture of white paper underneath. Traveling through his home city, Russell photographed details of the Art Deco architecture that Los Angles is known for. These images became source material for his "pile" drawings, whimsical renditions of demolished patterns that question the industrial exuberance associated with Art Deco but with the addition of more romantic elements, such as the Brooklyn Bridge, famous for its excess, symbolic of power, and synonymous with fraud.
Also on exhibit will be new works from "Runaway", an exploration of the darker side of the human psyche, using photographs as a drawing surface and negotiating Romanticism within the post-modern frame of mechanical reproduction. Russell presents the original fictional "Runaway" story, as a text-based wallpaper, reproducing Maurice Pillard Verneuil's pattern "Bats and Poppies", with each letter of the text operating as a pixel to create the overall image. Through images of ships, trees and repeating patterns that relate to longing for and domestication of new experiences—an unending desire for the unattainable. Russell likens childhood fantasies of running away to ideas of avant-garde utopias and horror movies in the disquieting calm for which he has become known. In “Runaway”, monsters are stable, cataloged entities, aesthetes are found wandering the roadside, and the apocalypse offers the greatest personal hope.
Christopher Russell received his BFA (1998) from California College of the Arts in San Francisco and his MFA (2004) from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. Russell was included in the exhibiton "Now WHAT?" at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Florida, and his novel Sniper, edited by Amy Gestler, was published in 2011. In 2009, Russell was the subject of a UCLA Hammer Museum Projects solo exhibition titled "Budget Decadence". Landscape, a monograph of his photographic series, was published in 2007 by Kolapsomal Press. Russell edited and wrote an essay for the catalog that accompanied his curatorial debut, "Against the Grain", at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions in 2008. From 2001 to 2005 Russell edited, designed, produced, and distributed the "destroy-to-enjoy" literary art zine Bedwetter. Additionally, he has written more than two dozen articles and reviews about art in Los Angeles. Christopher Russell's work is included in various public collections, including the Hammer Museum/Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts, J.P. Getty Museum Research Institute; Dennis Cooper Archive at The Fales Library and Special Collections, New York University; Rhode Island School of Design Museum; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
For further information, please contact Luis De Jesus or Jay Wingate at [email protected].
Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
2685 S. La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90034
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