Stephan Stoyanov, New York
Stephan Stoyanov has been devoting himself to bringing cutting edge contemporary art by emerging and mid-career artists to the forefront of the art world. The exhibits at the gallery are not limited by medium, featuring drawing, installation, painting, photography, sculpture, video, and new media; the artists are diverse in media and vision, using the power of subjectivity, suggestion and knowledge to their advantage. The gallery has no formal thesis regarding the program other than the task of showing the possibilities that exist in an art world which is saturated with various ideals and motives.
For ART-O-RAMA 2010, Stephan Stoyanov Gallery will present an exhibition by Australian-born, New York–based artist Jeff Gibson. An artist, occasional critic, and former senior editor of Australian magazine Art & Text, Jeff Gibson moved to New York in 1998 to work for Artforum, where he is currently managing editor.
Gibson’s artwork has straddled many forms and contexts – painting, photography, video, posters… for gallery and public spaces. Similarly, it has drawn on a variety of cultural fields and art-historical precedents – mass media, advertising, and graphic design via the critical and presentational strategies of Dada, Pop, Minimalism, and Conceptualism. An aesthetic and intellectual study in contrast and contingency, Gibson’s practice is fundamentally inclusive and combinatory.
For his contribution to ART-O-RAMA, Gibson proposes the building of a small screening room as a sculptural container for a video projection. The front and back of the room’s exterior will be wallpapered with a mosaic of images that alternate between allusive, abstract photographs and pictorial taxonomies appropriated from old encyclopedia.
The two outer sides of the screening room will be emblazoned with texts describing mock-pathological conditions excerpted from the artist’s ever-expanding dictionary of delusions. The text, upside-down and back-to-front, appears strange and largely unreadable. However, floor-bound mirrors laid along the length of the wall render the text legible, albeit in an illusory subterranean space. Often comical, the definitions throw psychological light on the vulnerabilities, foibles, blind spots, contradictions, and double standards we encounter in our daily lives.
Inside the screening room, a six-minute loop video will be projected onto the end wall; A slow, velvety ballad by Australian band “The Blackeyed Susans” playing continuously. The video blends the images and texts from the room’s exterior into a dreamy stream of consciousness. The warm melancholic tones of the music – a beautifully mournful reflection on psychological culpability – combine seamlessly with the fluid, even psychedelic, imagery. Through a chain of slow dissolves, the content takes the viewer on a journey through visceral desire and the machinations of the mind, leaving sufficient space for one’s own poetic elaborations.