Building on a Cliff
Presented by Sikkema Jenkins & Co
December 10, 2009- January 23, 2010
Sikkema Jenkins & Co. is pleased to present the group exhibition Building on a Cliff with works by Matt Connors, Arturo Herrera, and Merlin James on view from December 10th through January 23rd.
The exhibition title, taken from a painting by Merlin James, is indicative of the works included in the exhibition. Moving between sculpture, painting, installation and the spaces between, these 3 artists work at the edges of abstraction and modes of representation to create bodies of work that are both familiar and unsettling at the same time.
While the 3 artists largely work in areas of drawing and painting, they also often create works that blur the definitions of specific art practices, creating hybrid works; painting-sculpture, photography-installation, painting-installation. Matt Connors installations take the abstraction of his paintings and extend that to the architecture of the exhibition space. Merlin James new paintings often reveal their physical structure and may even include small sculptural details. Arturo Herrera creates steel sculptures based on delicate ink drawings, large wall works from small found photo images as well as collage works that fluctuate between the recognizable and the abstract.
Matt Connors lives and works in Los Angeles; Arturo Herrera lives and works in Berlin; and Merlin James lives and works in Glasgow.
In the backspace Sikkema Jenkins & Co. will present Sherman Ong’s short film (9 mins.) Ticket Seller. The film centers on Xiao Jing, a ticket seller in an old Singapore cinema. Coming from China to study acting in Singapore, her ambition is to break into the Singapore film industry as an actress. This film is about cinema and the slippages between documentary and fiction. It dwells on the idea of acting/re-acting/reprising real and imaginary roles, and touches on the themes of diaspora, migration, displacement, identity and the sense of belonging.
Sherman Ong was a contributing artist to the Singapore Pavilion of the 2009 Venice Biennale, which included Ticket Seller. He is an award-winning Singaporean filmmaker, photographer and educator. Straddling fiction and documentary, his films have been exhibited in Europe, US, Brazil and Asia and have won awards in Hong Kong, Greece, Italy, Indonesia and Malaysia.
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