Early artworks by Robert Kleyn are on exhibit at Catriona Jeffries this summer. Kleyn is a Vancouver-based artist and architect whose work crosses the boundaries of visual art, architecture, design and critical writing.
Produced between 1969 and 1983, the photographs, 35mm slides, Super 8 films, collages and works on paper, represent a survey of his conceptual work when he was an architecture student at the University of British Columbia; pieces created while working for an architecture firm in London; and photos taken while in Rome on movie sets with Roberto Rossellini.
During the 1980s he lived in New York, and worked mainly in video and sculpture. As a friend and peer of Ian Wallace, Rodney Graham and Jeff Wall, his experimentations during the period examined by this exhibition were informed not only by his international experiences but by his strong minimalist approach.
Kleyn was born in Amsterdam and came to Vancouver in the 1960s to study at University of BC. After many years abroad, he returned to Vancouver before teaching architecture at the University of Detroit and University of Michigan.
His work was shown in exhibitions at the Vancouver Art Gallery and abroad, including Graham, Kleyn, Wall, Wallace, Studio Casoli, Milan (1989) and Vancouver in the '70s, Vancouver Art Gallery (1989). Kleyn has since had solo exhibitions at the Canadian Cultural Centre, Rome (1988) and the Belkin Satellite, Vancouver (2004). His work was included in the recent exhibition We: Vancouver 12 Manifestos for the City, Vancouver Art Gallery (2011).