In celebration of our tenth year in Chelsea, we are pleased to present Ten Years After, an exhibition of works of artists we’ve been privileged to work with over the last decade. The show’s participants include artists from the United States, Spain, Germany, England, and Cuba; the selection of works on display showcases the gallery’s commitment to exhibiting striking and thought-provoking works that embody a wide range of styles, techniques, and artistic visions.
The following statements provide insights on the work of each artist on the show’s roster, along with biographical and professional details.
Gustavo Acosta was born in in Havana, Cuba in 1958, and is currently based in Miami. His intensely hued portrayals of sites in Havana, Miami, New York, and the Middle East feature rectilinear overlays of strong, intensely moody colors that integrate multiple allusions to reason and its traditions — the ideal planned-city street grid; the Golden Ratio and its long history as a supposedly true and self-evident compositional principle; the sharp-edged, no-nonsense Bauhaus aesthetic — with subtle references to the small flashes of vitality and inspiration that lurk within even the most drab and desolate environments. His canvases engage with neglected, antiquated, and somber settings, in the hope of revealing their meaning and living purpose for the present.
Per Adolfsen’s emotionally charged acrylic paintings seamlessly merge representational and abstract elements that activate the works with surprising “funhouse” effects of fear, foreboding and buoyancy. The dream-like floating tableaux, replete with swirling figures and fragmented architectural forms, engage the viewer in a seductive world of fantasy and uncertainty that recalls classic Scandinavian angst.
Adolfsen lives and works in Odense, Denmark, where he was born in 1964. He has had several gallery and museum exhibitions, including at the Frederikshavn Kunstmuseum- og Exlibrissamling and at the Kastrupgaardsamlingen.
Diana Copperwhite’s work stems from an idiosyncratic practice that embraces the temporal nature of painting practice. This encompasses working with large-scale wall installations, large canvases and an ongoing interest in the human portrait. Diana Copperwhite, born 1969, lives and works in Dublin. Copperwhite has exhibited widely in Ireland and abroad. Recent Solo shows include Crooked Orbit, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin, Depend on the morning sun, Gallery Thomas Jaeckel, New York, 2016, Driven by Distraction at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin, Ireland, 2016, A Million and One Things Under the Sun, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin, 2015, Shadowland , Gallery Thomas Jaeckel, New York, 2014, solo presentations at Volta NY, 2013 and at PULSE NY, 2015 where she was nominated for the PULSE prize. She has shown in shows at the University Museum of the Arts, Tokyo, 2017, Highlanes Municipal Art Gallery 2015, Crawford Gallery Cork, 2013, Ron Mandos, Amsterdam, 2012, Temple Bar Gallery and Studios Dublin, 2012, Irish Museum of Modern Art, 2011, University of Western Sydney Australia, 2009, Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, 2009, Centro Culturel Tecla Sala Barcelona 2008. Copperwhite was awarded the AIB Art Prize in 2007, which resulted in a major monograph and touring exhibition of her work. Her recent publication Fake New World was published to coincide with a wall drawing and recent exhibition at the RHA Gallery Dublin, it features a recent biography written by Gail Levin. Her work is held in many important public collections including the Office of Public Works, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the Arts Council of Ireland, Limerick City Gallery of Art, as well as private collections in Ireland, across Europe and in the United States.
“My artwork comes from a daily experience where I create a contemporary mythology that puts on a same level the physical reality, the oneiric material of dreams, the subconscious, magic, the offering, the visible and the hidden reality that surround us.
“A reformulation of ancient mythologies that merged together become part of my artwork in conjunction with my personal experience of the sacred through mythical stories, traditions and legends, rituals, superstitions and intuitive revelations.
“The process of making the artwork it’s like a ritual; the choice of every material, the configuration of every shape, of every element, brings a poetic meaning and symbolism to the artwork. The process as exorcism, the transformation of physical pain as purification of the body and the spirit, its laceration as the offering to the miracle of life.”
“For more than 20 years I have been probing an artistic vein in which naturalistic forms shape-shift on top of a flat color-space. I often feel like I’m searching for the psychological and emotional linkage between brain and viscera so that the work forms a kind of connective tissue with the viewer.”
Ian Hughes received his B.A. in 1981 from Yale College, where he also attended the Yale Summer School of Art at Norfolk, CT. He received his MFA in 1984 from Columbia University School of Art. His work has appeared in numerous group shows in New York City, including featured exhibitions at The Drawing Center (Selections 31) and a White Room exhibit at White Columns (1991) curated by Bill Arning. In 1998, Artists’ Space featured three large Hughes paintings in an exhibition celebrating its 25th Anniversary and curated by Irving Sandler, Founder, and Claudia Gould, Director. Gallery Thomas Jaeckel has presented three solo exhibitions of paintings in New York (2010, 2012, and 2014), and group exhibitions in Miami, including Art Winwood and Context:Miami. In 2012, under the auspices of Gallery Thomas Jaeckel, Hughes was selected for a solo booth in the inaugural edition of UNTITLED: Miami, curated by Omar Lopez-Chahoud.
Ian Hughes lives and works in New York City. He is an adjunct Assistant Professor of Foundation Design at Parsons The New School of Design.
Julie Langsam is a painter whose works examines the legacy of modernism within the context of the 21st century. Langsam has had numerous exhibitions, including a solo museum show at MOCA Cleveland; is the recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award; and is represented in corporate collections throughout the United States such as the Progressive Corporation, the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and B&F Capital Markets, among others.
Recent solo exhibitions include: Gallery Thomas Jaeckel in NYC; Richard & Dolly Maass Gallery, SUNY Purchase, Purchase, NY; Reykjavik Art Gallery in Reykjavik, Iceland; and Espai 8 in Barcelona, Spain. Other solo exhibitions include Frederieke Taylor Gallery; Michael Steinberg Fine Art; and Clementine Gallery, all in New York City. Group exhibitions include the Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY; CCA Andratx in Mallorca, Spain; Caren Golden Fine Art, NYC; Edward Tyler Nahem Fine Art, NYC; Foundation Mona Bismarck, Paris, France; and the Drawing Center, NYC.
She has been written about in the New York Times; Art in America; Dwell Magazine; The Plain Dealer; BOMB Magazine; The New Jersey Star Ledger; NY Arts International; Artnet and ArtCritical.
Among Langsam’s other activities, she is curator of such exhibitions as Color as Structure at Frederieke Taylor Gallery in NYC and The Big Bang at SPACES Gallery in Cleveland, OH. She is co-curator of the exhibitions Arte Povera American Style: Funk, Play, Poetry & Labor (CIA); It’s A Wonderful Life: Psychodrama in Contemporary Painting; House Case Study Cleveland; and Artist’s For A New Era (SPACES).
Langsam is the former Motto Endowed Chair and Head of Painting at the Cleveland Institute of Art. She is currently Assistant Professor of Visual Arts at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University.
Armando Mariño produces richly expressive paintings, sculptures, and installations that merge abstraction and representation, the everyday and the surreal, and nature and culture. Among his sculptures, for example, is a house upraised atop a forest of human legs. His paintings also feature fantastical imagery, including a girl sprouting mushrooms from her body. The colors in his paintings are hyper-bright, recalling the saturated hues of our digital culture. Decidedly of his time, Mariño often seeks the spark for his work online. As he has explained: “I just Google an image and save it until I’m ready to use it . . . It’s the way that the picture talks to you . . . but also . . . the way you can add something. There’s something else that comes only from the hands of the painter.”
Mariño was born in Santiago de Cuba in 1968, and currently lives and works in New York. His works are held in numerous public and private collections including: Deutsche Bank Collection, USA; 21C Museum Hotels, Kentucky; Coca Cola Foundation, Spain; and Shelley & Donald Rubin Collection, New York.
John A. Parks
“Ever since the Romans dreamed them up putti have accompanied many kinds of imagery. Rediscovered by Renaissance painters, they appear in countless works throughout the centuries, cheerfully mirroring and often exaggerating grownup behavior. Having worked on narrative paintings for the last few years, I’ve recently been using putti because they give me the opportunity to explore human gestures and interactions in a way that is playful, sometimes bizarre and strangely universal. Using them often feels absurd or wayward but the possibilities for invention, humor and insight into human behavior seem compelling. Putti are also mysterious beings; in the end none of the painters who used them knew who or what they are. Neither do I.”
“All my work in general deals with the question of identity, understood as the system of judgments about a person, culture or phenomenon. This question is generally treated from the prism of Caribbean popular culture, using the humor and elements of this culture, and such clichés formed about the culture, that when it comes from them, it builds images that simultaneously incarnate that reality, and question it.
“The ambivalence of genres is also a topic that is near to me, a game of illusions with the spectator, the doubt in the identity of a concept or an image, the phenomena that pretend to be one thing, but that are really something else or both at the same time.
Although my work has a conceptual root, where the idea conditions formal elements; the sensory sense, the sensations that emanate from the forms of my work are fundamental to them. In my artwork I am used to working with different media depending on how interested I am: painting, installations, sculptures, prints, ceramics; this, however, has been associated generally with the soft sculpture (sewn and stuffed fabrics), a technique that brings me closer to the craftwork of the popular cultures of the Caribbean, incorporating real chosen objects.”
Elio Rodriguez was born in Havana, Cuba in 1966. He graduated from the Higher Institute of Art (ISA), Cuba in 1989. He has been awarded Art Residencies at Hutchins Institute, Harvard University, at Mattress Factory Art Museum, Pittsburg and given lectures in several Universities as Harvard University, NYU, Swarthmore College among others. His artwork has been displayed in several solo and group shows around the world and Art Fairs like Context Art Fair, Miami, FL/ Pulse Art Fair, NYC/ New York Context Art Fair, NYC/ Southampton Art Fair, WaterMill, NY/ Flux Art Fair Harlem, NYC. His work is present in several collections as National Arts Museum, Cuba/ Jersey City State University, USA/ Foundation AMBA, Brazil/ Hainaut City Hall, Belgium/ Peggy Crafitz Collection, Washington, DC, USA/ Center For Cuban Studies, New York, NY/ The von Christierson Collection, London/ Shelley & Donald Rubin Collection, New York/ W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research, Harvard University.
Rolph’s triplewall and canvas paintings construct their grammar of signs through material engagement and unprincipled investigations into the history of the ‘pictorial’. Driven by a unique approach to color he consistently produces compositions with attitude and visual dexterity.
His forthcoming solo show at 532gallery is planned for May 2018. Other recent solo exhibitions include “Painted on the sky,” Barbara Davis Gallery, Houston (2016) “Recollection”, 532gallery, New York (2015), “Paradiso,” Barbara Davis Gallery, Houston (2014), “Atelier”, E.S.A.D, Valence, France (2013). Rolph’s work is in many private and public collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and Tate gallery, London as well as the Duke and Duchess of Westminster. He recently completed a large installation for Facebook HQ and is visiting Professor in Fine Art at Bucks New University.
Piers Secunda was born in London in 1976 and studied painting at Chelsea College of Art in London. Secunda has developed a studio practice using paint in a sculptural manner, rejecting the limitations imposed by the canvas. His intensive research based work, split into distinctly separate groups, explores the driving forces of both passive and aggressive human needs: Examining the effects of violent geopolitics on both people and culture, by moulding bullet and bomb damage from war zones and the sites of historic conflicts, to make works. And recording energy history using crude oil as a printing medium, to examine post industrial revolution developments, both cultural and technological, which define our world today.
Born in Idar-Oberstein, Germany, Tanja Selzer completed her studies at the University of Applied Sciences, Department of Design in Hamburg, Germany. Her focus lies in painting. With her work, she explores the boundaries of voyeuristic situations and their social consequences. Since 2005 her work is exhibited nationally and internationally and is part of public and private collections. In 2008 she won the Gesellschafter art award with a special exhibition at the Art Fair 21 in Cologne. Currently she lives in Berlin.
Jose Angel Vincench
I suggest, perhaps absurdly, that Vincench’s idiosyncratic constructions are symbolic self-portraits—highly personal expressive assertions of his individuality, both as an abstract artist and autonomous individual, in subliminal defiance of a tightly controlled society and authoritarian ideology. In On the Spiritual in Art Kandinsky held idiosyncrasy in high esteem, arguing that it was a sign of genuine, unique personality. However ironically, Vincench is a spiritual artist in a materialistic society, all the more ironically because he uses the most socially valuable as well as spiritually significant of all materials to make his art. — Donald Kuspit, from a forthcoming essay on Vincench.