Extended through November 9, 2019
These paintings are made in such a way that they accept order only very reluctantly. Eventually there is some form of order, but they strive against it.
Gagosian is pleased to present a series of new paintings in watercolor on canvas by Albert Oehlen, his first exhibition in Asia.
Oehlen approaches painting as a perceptual challenge, a puzzle set within the unpredictable arena of the picture plane. He often imposes specific rules or limitations on his work—keeping to a certain palette or beginning with a straight line—as a way to interrogate the infinite possibilities that the act of painting presents. By continuously flipping between chaos and control, he opens up new relationships between pictorial space, color, and gesture.
In these new paintings, Oehlen emphasizes the importance of spontaneity within his artistic method. Diverging from his recent works created with oil or lacquer on aluminum or the aluminum composite Dibond, Oehlen’s decision to use watercolor in this series marks a stylistic return to his hazy, blended, almost impressionistic oil paintings dating from 2016 and earlier.
Oehlen begins with a chalky white ground, across which he flicks and stains splashes of fluid color. Hues dart between canvases: the same intense shade of magenta—a color he previously referred to as “hysterical” in the context of his Tree Paintings (2013–16)—meanders snakelike from painting to painting, puncturing through the murky veil of watercolors in a vivid streak before resurfacing elsewhere as a series of dots peppered down the canvas. Oehlen revels in the dynamism of his lines, allowing them to come to life and dictate each twist of his ever-shifting compositions.
Nevertheless, Oehlen’s frenzied brushstrokes are tempered by moments of painterly control. Interspersed between splotches and swipes of color are lines, curves, and gradients, all delineated with satisfying uniformity. While his paintings initially appear to lack geometric regularity, they are in fact filled with clean-cut right angles—including a recurring L-shaped motif, which recalls the artist’s yellow-and-black paintings from his 2018 exhibition SEXE, RELIGION, POLITIQUE. These forceful right angles—along with rectangular window-like apertures and eerie humanoid forms—are enshrouded deep within the canvas, their watery facture only adding to their frustrating, tantalizing ephemerality. Swallowed up by the slashes of pigment surrounding them, these loose strands of figuration ultimately dissipate within a churning whirlwind of colors.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with a text by art historian Christian Malycha.
An exhibition of Oehlen’s work curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist will open at the Serpentine Galleries in London on October 2, 2019.
然而，厄倫亦以偶爾的克制緩和狂亂的筆觸。在四散的色彩斑點之間，充斥著線條、曲線和漸變色彩，均以令人滿意的一致性描繪而成。厄倫的畫作乍看之下缺乏幾何的規律性，但實際上卻滿佈俐落的直角，包括反覆出現的L形圖案，令人想起他於2018年「SEXE, RELIGION, POLITIQUE」展覽展出的黃黑色畫作。這些強而有力的直角、類似窗戶的長方形開口和詭異的人形融入畫布之中，如水的質感更加強了它們令人沮喪又誘人的無常特性。這些模糊的形態被四周的色彩吞噬，並在色彩的漩渦中逐漸消失。
由Hans Ulrich Obrist策展的厄倫作品展將於2019年10月2日在倫敦Serpentine Gallery揭幕。
Albert Oehlen: Maximum Chance Maximum Control
The artist met with art historian Christian Malycha to discuss his newest paintings.
Gagosian Quarterly Fall 2019
The Fall 2019 issue of Gagosian Quarterly is now available, featuring a detail from Sinking (2019) by Nathaniel Mary Quinn on its cover.
Cows by the Water
At the Palazzo Grassi, Venice, a career-spanning exhibition of paintings by Albert Oehlen, entitled Cows by the Water, went on view in the spring of 2018. Caroline Bourgeois, the curator of the exhibition, discusses how the show was organized around the artist’s relationship to music.
Thursday, October 10, 2019, 6pm
Gagosian, Hong Kong
Gagosian senior director Han-I Wang will lead a tour of Albert Oehlen’s first exhibition in Asia, a series of new paintings in watercolor on canvas. In these works, Oehlen emphasizes the importance of spontaneity within his artistic method. Oehlen’s use of watercolor in this series diverges from his recent works created with oil or lacquer on aluminum or the aluminum composite Dibond, and marks a stylistic return to his hazy, blended, almost impressionistic oil paintings dating from 2016 and earlier. To attend the free event, RSVP to email@example.com. Space is limited.
Albert Oehlen, Untitled, 2019 © Albert Oehlen. Photo: Jeff McLane