Urbania: Gerald Slota,
Christopher Rose, David Isenhour
Portland OR July 3-August 30, 2008
Gerald Slota, Leg (2008), archival pigment print [Quality Pictures, Portland OR, Jul 3- Aug 30]
In Urbania, photographer Gerald Slota, painter Christopher Rose and sculptor David Isenhour each capture vestiges of contemporary life and confront the realities of urbanization. This exhibition is the first time each artist has exhibited in the Northwest.
Gerald Slota, a New York photographer known for his enigmatic black & white photo-collages, works exclusively in colour for this series based on the grungy neighbourhoods that surround his Paterson, New Jersey studio. Housing projects, barbed wire and haunting figures are skewed into textural compositions through a labyrinth of processes. He combines paper cutouts, crude mark-making and imagery, then re-works and re-photographs the artworks several times to produce multilayered vignettes. Psychologically dissonant, graphic and surreal, Slota's unconventional methods recreate the tensions of his moody urban environment.
Brooklyn-based Christopher Rose also expresses the friction of living in a metropolis through his paintings of the American landscape. Illustrating gridlock, car accidents, crowds and freeway traffic, they are painted in a reduced, almost monochromatic palette. Rose's scenes become simplified patterns that evoke the pathos of overpopulation.
David Isenhour's sinister yet humorous sculptures depict genetic research and manipulation of nature. His quasi-scientific forms have the elasticity of a cartoon episode, yet seem like magnifications of cell division and organic mutations. The slick, cast-plastic works have a playful tone and pop style coloration with their automotive paint finishes. He has lived, worked and exhibited in Atlanta, San Antonio, and Brooklyn.