Chosen by Mousse at London Gallery Weekend, June 2023.

Over the previous 4 a long time, Jacqueline Humphries has been working via the query of what modern summary portray can imply in a society mediated on-line. Excavating the bounds of her medium, Humphries generates a density of languages, kinds and gestures native not solely to the historical past of portray but in addition the codes and aesthetic registers that belong to the limitless scroll of knowledge and commerce on the flat chilly surfaces of screens. Utilizing stencils, fluorescent paint and black gentle, to call just a few of her supplies, Humphries’ work revels in its playful profanity, the pleasure of its sheer materiality seeping from its floor. Humphries describes her search as one for “a type of psychological hook, as if there’s nearly suspense or a way of one thing unsuitable.” This anonymous sensation creeps throughout a lot of her oeuvre; her large-scale, commanding work inviting shut inspection, whereas on the similar time eluding and complicated the methods during which their surfaces have been labored by Humphries herself.

For the event of this exhibition, Humphries is exhibiting a brand new collection which she has described as “pre vandalised” work. Absorbing the current shock techniques engaged by eco-activists, Humphries’s newest works are repeatedly inscribed with motifs of vandalism, with paint apparently flung onto their surfaces as if to disfigure the art work beneath. But Humphries will not be merely simulating these marks of defacement or destruction—specifically pea soup or black liquid splattered throughout masterpieces in museums. As a substitute, in repeating and dealing via them, her canvases appear to suggest a curiosity about how we could take into account these disruptive marks as lively brokers themselves, containing inside them intelligence of media and a spotlight economies. In so doing, Humphries’s new work proceed to find a rupture between symbolic and actual, or, in her personal phrases “carry abstraction right into a renewed confrontation with the precise world.” While Humphries is understood to relocate earlier motifs and indicators from the matrix of her personal oeuvre—her final exhibition at Trendy Artwork even translated older work of their entirety via ASCII code—this newest collection of work additionally now find themselves via earlier gallery stock numbers, painted right here as part of their intrinsic topic and now current inside a displaced system of classification.

Proven throughout each galleries, Humphries’ new physique of labor for Trendy Artwork takes the type of particular person or multi-panel preparations of large-scale canvases. In it, she continues to wrestle within the battle between erasing hint of the hand and reinstating it via mechanical means; a binary that’s echoed elsewhere in her follow the place precision meets accident and consideration counters instinct. The legacies of Summary Expressionism are folded into her course of, with paint utilized in gestural homages to Jackson Pollock, Barnett Newman and Lucio Fontana. However the granular floor of Humphries’ personal iconic vernacular carries via the span of her current work; her marked, gridded surfaces incorporating such quotidian indicators as digital static and emojis: the visible material of our on-line existences. 

at Trendy Artwork, London
till July 22, 2023

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