Kristan Kennedy   

May 31–July 7, 2013

Sleeper, Kennedy’s first solo exhibition with the gallery, derives its title from the 1973 Woody Allen film by the same name, and the “slow fade” of information and imagery that that emerges and submerges over time.

In recent years, Kennedy has become known for her abstract works of varying scale, created in unstretched linen, seen mutating in form from dropcloth, to wall hanging, to drape. Opposing the often percieved ‘precious’ nature of paintings on linen, her works are unbridled in their expression; handled and washed with vigor – marks literally erased by the washing machine and replaced by new marks in ink and dye. For the exhibition, Kennedy has created a large-scale linen work, which is slung over the wall dividing the gallery. Placed upon this ambitious new painting in ink and dye on linen Kennedy are the refuse of numerous crushed aluminum cans, affixed with white and black gesso. A glitter curtain that slumps instead of shimmers, the painting acts as a dull mirror in the room; a destabilized ground with no horizon, a beauty full of truth and violence and sex and debris. Alongside this large, salient work are two small paintings – one on linen, the other on carpet – and two photographs.

Kennedy’s work investigates the information within abstraction, what is communicated about the self, the material, the process, and the obsession with attributing meaning to mark. In recent work, her explorations surround embodiment, metaphysical nihilism, voids, eradicating the hand while simultaneously respecting it, upending the ‘self’ by placing something within the paintings and then allowing for information to get stuck to it (appendages of junk, cans, dried gesso) and information to be eradicated and destroyed (by the washing machine, ringing out, covering up, by bundling or tearing, freeing from the frame, by allowing it to cover a room.) Also addressed is an arrival at meaning by giving up control of meaning; truth within material, the hand, the mind.