On Hair and Bathing | The Artists House | 21 Sept - 14 Dec 2019
Curated by Irit Levin, the group exhibition 'On Hair and Bathing' is on view at the Artists House Tel Aviv, Israel until 14 December 2019.
Eros | Fox Jensen Gallery, Sydney | May - June 2019
This small exhibition doesn’t pretend to be more than it is – a curious collection of evidence that we are and always have been surrounded by beautiful, dark, joyous, covert and occasionally unmasked eroticism. That this everyday eroticism gives force and poignancy to our existence, bliss to our temporary animation, and surprisingly regular highlights to the sometimes dry narratives of AH101.
What is clear from this slice of Eros is the range and distinctiveness of how we approach the erotic. From Gideon Rubin’s (IL) undemonstrative and highly sensitive paintings that are tuned to a more “domestic” eroticism; to Hayv Kahraman’s (USA) loaded compositions that conflate cultural and art historical references with a deeply personal self-examination; to Aiko Robinson’s (NZ) contemporary resuscitation of Japanese “shunga” pornography. For all of these artists there is lengthy precedent for the conceptual basis for their work but they bring idiosyncrasy and freshness to the aesthetics of Eros.
Hoda Afshar’s (AUS) suite of photographs Behold offer an intimate view into a concealed world where tenderness rubs up against illegality, where sexuality is necessarily covert, not because some audiences might feel the need to claim protection but the protagonists depend on it. Tracey Snelling’s (USA) humorous but confronting dioramas are exposés of strip-tease at the strip-mall. The collision of uptight Christian morality going head-to-head with those giving head declares the extent of the cultural discord. Oddly both venues welcome you with open arms and promise to deliver ecstasy.
Alongside these works are extraordinary paintings by Tomislav Nikolic (AUS), Eric Fischl (USA), Jane Bustin (UK) and Frank Kenis (BEL) each of whom attend to notions of the sensual and the erotic – from Bustin’s and Nikolic’s distilled poetic symbolism to Fischl’s and Kenis’s forceful painterly explicitness.
Eros will travel to Fox Jensen McCrory in Auckland, New Zealand.
Artist in Residence | Palazzo Monti Residency | Brescia | May 2019
Gideon Rubin will be the Artist-in-Residence at Palazzo Monti, an artist residency program based in Brescia, housed in a palazzo that dates back to 1200. Built in the XIII century, the residency is conveniently located at a short distance from the culturally rich cities of Milan, Venice and Florence. Decorated with Neoclassicist frescos from the late 1750s, the palazzo provides an inspiring setting to create contemporary art.
Warning Shadows | Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne | 11 April - 18 May 2019
Gideon Rubin’s most recent work follows several years of working with magazines and publications dating from the first half of the 20th century. The title of Rubin’s latest exhibition – “Warning Shadows” – is borrowed from a 1923 Weimar Cinema film of the same title, in which a puppeteer uses shadow theatre to show the audience the consequences of acting upon their desires. The title alludes to the warning signs throughout history that point to the writing on the wall.
Rubin worked with imagery taken from magazines, films and newspapers for his exhibition at the Freud Museum, London (2018); where he painted over - censoring and altering - images that originated from Germany in the years leading up to WW2.
Following his exhibition at the Freud museum, Rubin completed an artist residency in LA, where he focused on Hollywood images from the 50’s - a politically-charged decade that reflected a difficult period in the film industry’s history. Rubin’s work in LA continued the theme of the Freud Museum exhibition while further relating to modern-day social and political turmoil in more recent decades.
Returning to London, in a second-hand bookshop Rubin came across a book on the stars of the Weimar Cinema with imagery that ignited his most recent series of paintings. The images of the Weimar films combine several aspects of Rubin's work - the time between the wars, the culture and media of that period and the characters that have come to represent those times in our collective memory.
Shot in black-and-white, the films of the Weimar cinema have a striking aesthetic with extraordinary attention given to the detailed sets and costumes. Rubin painted the Weimar actors and actresses, focusing in particular on the films Madchen in Uniform (1931), Menschen am Sonntag (1930) and Die Todesschleife (1928).
Also on display are works from the series ‘Travel Paintings’. In 2016 Rubin took part in a residency programme (supported by Galerie Karsten Greve and Outset), which was an artistic exchange between China and Israel. In the project titled ‘Places of Conflict’, the Chinese video artist, Chen Ran, traveled to Israel, while Gideon Rubin visited Xinjiang – a province in China that is subject to increasingly more extreme government control and oppression.
The aim was to make works that reflected upon and reacted to the situation that each artist encountered on the ground in their respective hosting countries, which focused on places of conflict. The resulting works capture the atmosphere in an area that is deeply affected by political and cultural turmoil, acting as a snapshot of the everyday lives of those populations affected and challenged by conflict. The ‘Travel Paintings’ series consists of 27 small-format oil paintings on linen that document a range of subjects from the interior of a hotel room and clothes drying on a line, as well as the more extreme aspects of life in Xinjiang, such as the presence of armoured vehicles and police on the streets.
Both series presented in ‘Warning Shadows’ question our ability to learn a lesson from history, exploring how it informs and mirrors the present day.
The Conversation | Minnesota St Project | January 5 - 26 2019
The Conversation is a group presentation from our roster of artists including Martin Basher, Ethan Cook, Chris Coy, Amie Dicke, Alec Egan, Jibade-Khalil Huffman, An Te Liu, Jason Bailer Losh, Jordan Nassar, Neil Raitt, Jay Stuckey, Samantha Thomas, alongside Sara Berman, Michael John Kelly, Gideon Rubin, Robert Russell, Caroline Walker, Sara Ann Weber, and Janet Werner. This eclectic group of artists, working across a range of media and interests, showcase the gallery’s commitment to formal experimentation and dialogue with materiality and processdriven work.