Evan Gruzis at The HOLE NYC

by: Guillaume Boulez

September 23, 2011

For those who haven’t been yet, do not miss Evan Gruzis’ new show at The HOLE NYC. Exotic Beta, Gruzis’ second NYC solo exhibition, features ink paintings, sculpture, video, and installation, including a collaborative installation with renown designer Rafael de Cardenas.

Presented in collaboration with True Religion Jeans, Exotic Beta fuses a sense of the exotic with the language of market research to explore the way meaning is made and the relativity of “taste” : Exotic like a tattoo of a Japanese character, Beta like a corporation’s second re-launching of a product after market research and focus group have masticated all the language to the point of flavorlessness. The young artist from Milwaukee, WI has for main goal to create the potential for meaning amidst the post-apocalyptic landscape of empty signs. By using imagery that was once evocative and now is just a husk of a cultural signifier, Evan can foreground his real interest, which is simple act of looking. The centerpiece of the exhibition is a large triptych titled Startatos. Featuring the silhouette form of a skull, a fender Stratocaster guitar and a metronome, this contemporary Vanitas presents our forever-teenaged culture’s “rebelliousness” in the contemplation of it’s own ticking clock. Many of the themes of this exhibition are activated in the collaborative installation with Rafael de Cardenas. This sculpture, inspired by a sequence in the movie Flashdance called “Imagination” encapsulates a strange and uniquely 1980s Orientalism. Concurrently with this exhibition, Evan is presenting a simultaneous solo show of new works at Nicole Kagsbrun Gallery in Chelsea entitled Shadow Work. He will also be releasing a new limited-edition book, Existential Crisis, published by Anteism, as well as a limited-edition C-print and a silver gelatin print produced by Signed And Numbered.



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