Kayne Griffin Corcoran is pleased to present MIXING UP THE MEDICINE, an exhibition of new paintings by Deanna Thompson in the main gallery with two video works by Michel Auder in the south gallery.
In 2012, Thompson requested that Auder select a photograph of himself from which she could paint a portrait. Out of this gesture grew an ongoing visual conversation: Auder would email Thompson a self-portrait, she would respond with a painting and the exchange continued with the subject matter expanding beyond portraiture. This new body of paintings is steeped in Thompson’s visual archeology that lies somewhere between careful recording and deliberate removal. Undertaking an exercise in selection, Thompson transforms the images beyond their ‘origin’ to become her own. Prior to these paintings, abandoned homesteads of the Californian desert had been the studied focus of Thompson’s work. While she has always approached interiors, detritus and details such as lighting fixtures as consuming portraits in themselves, her new work evinces a growing sensitivity to the complexities—and possibilities—of the human form.
Michel Auder’s films and videos are recordings of his surroundings, his private life and the people around him. The French artist first began exploring video as an artistic medium in the late 1960s. Over the years he has shot thousands of hours of film, in the early days with Super 8, 16mm and 35mm cameras and subsequently embracing the latest video and digital media as they became available—right up to the camera in his mobile phone. Much of this footage was only edited by the artist many years after it was recorded, and turned into video works ranging from sequences lasting just a few minutes to feature-length films.1 Auder’s new film MIXING UP THE MEDICINE (2015) is made in his immediate environment, collaging sequences he shot himself with excerpts appropriated from the Internet. The work includes elaborate soundtracks composed by the artist himself, using found material and mixing classical and popular music with sound recorded on location. In Endless Column, first exhibited at the Kunsthalle Basel, the unseen artist frantically flips through innumerable cellphone photographs, accompanied by the familiar clicking of a mouse.
Despite the great disparity in their method and medium, Auder and Thompson share a certain fluid approach to notions of temporality. In Thompson’s work as well there is a strong sense of a captured moment, although she burrows ever deeper into that moment’s interior life, while Auder pushes relentlessly forward to the next. Each in their own way, Auder and Thompson break out and reframe the material components of modern life to create dense portraits of the world as it surrounds them.
Deanna Thompson was born in Bakersfield, California and graduated from CSU Bakersfield. She resides in Yucca Valley, California. On the occasion of her first solo exhibition in 2010, the Los Angeles Times’ Christopher Knight noted her ability to “imbue [a landscape] with quiet mystery [and]...subtle desperation” as well as her ”unostentatious integrity.”
1 Stories, Myths, Ironies, and Other Songs: Conceived, Directed, Edited, and Produced by M. Auder, Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland. Curated by Adam Szymczyk, 2013.