Albert Oehlen

Mrz 7, 2012

New York City

For German artist Albert Oehlen, the practice of painting is a subject in itself. The guiding principles of his method are uncertainty and eclecticism while his tools are brushes, fingers, collage, and computer, all wielded with equal ease. He treats abstraction as gesture or geometry, superimposed, in combination, or conflated with a figurative register, as in a readymade film poster covered in smudges and stains. His restless palette can be intense, subdued, dour or reduced to grey.

Often Oehlen begins by imposing a set of rules or structural limitations. In some paintings, landscapes lurk in messy patches of paint. Collages can be both a conceptual and formal construct.

In Oehlen’s recent work, flat, figurative cut-outs-all the products of computer-aided design (CAD)—and gestural strokes of oil paint trade places in the service of collage. Revolving around the crisis of the real that is inherent in CAD, the resulting collages tug at the distinctions between man-made and machine-made, representational and non-representational, abstract and figurative.

Gagosian Gallery

March 3rd – April 7th
980 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10075