RAW Paris, open for view Wednesday 17 Oct - Monday 22 Oct, 2pm - 1am.
Vernissage Friday 19 Oct, starts 6pm.
19 RUE FERNAND LEGER,
During FIAC art fair in Paris two young South African artists, Tim Dempers and Michael Elion, will put on a late-night exhibition in the studio of Xavier Veilhan. The title of the show refers to both the work itself and how the artist’s feel at this juncture in their lives. The work challenges our perceptions with new modes of sensory expression. The exhibition is supported by work from Andre Niemeyer (Brazil), Sandra Pfeifer (Austria) and Kathrin Kur (Germany). RAW is a supplementary art venue during the fair.
Tim Dempers’ three-dimensional paintings explore the potential identity of lines, using digital media to exploit new possibilities in painting. Dempers uses algorithms (developed in collaboration with mathematician Dr. Alex Scott) and parametric modelling to create three-dimensional paintings from his sketches. His work is based on exploiting components of kinetic energy exerted in the drawing of a line - acceleration, direction, pressure, distribution etc. - and allowing them to serve as catalysts for his work. In “Code Unknown” fibreglass strips undulate rhythmically around a transparent frame. By harnessing “the entropy of a line”, Dempers proffers an original paradigm from which to understand the synthesis of form and content.
Michael Elion’s work deals with aesthetics and visual perception. The highly formal content is drawn largely from the natural world. His interest in representation and language, and their relationship to aesthetics, come together in a dialectic of seemingly antithetical works. The words KATE MOSS emblazoned in gold leaf confront an enormous, ugly, yet beautiful fly. Elion’s use of juxtaposition in the presentation of different works serves as an auxiliary aesthetic tool, each work acting as a perceptual prosthesis for the other. His research interest in cognitive science is evident in his chequer pattern, tropical aquariums that intend to defy “the inherent desire of the brain for order”.
Andre Niemeyer’s aesthetic sensitivity is clearly rooted in his fashion background. The young men in his “Wanted” series (mug shot type paintings) are beautiful, impassive and damaged and evoke ambiguity. Are they victims of abuse or victims of their own narcissistic invincibility? Heroic yet delicate, the duality reveals the ineluctable vulnerability of youth and the fragility of romanticized masculinity.
Sandra Pfeifer uses female mannequins as the subjects in her photographs, and in so doing initiates a deceptive dialogue with the viewer. Each of the mise-en-scenes in her “Dummy” series is based on marginal figures like Anita Berber, “society whores”, who are both desired and pitied.
Kathrin Kur’s photographs reveal some of the blindspots of our experience in a culture of absolute visibility. Her empty, bullet-ridden shooting ranges invite ambivalence, using a seductively clam aesthetic to portray a practice-ground for killing.