MARC STRAUS

Gallery

Contaminated Landscape

June 16 - August 12, 2022

Opening Reception
Thu June 16 2022, 4pm - 8pm

I Love Everything About You,

MARC STRAUS is proud to present Contaminated Landscape, curated by Aniko Erdosi and Florence Lynch, featuring Pawel Althamer, Michael Brown, Tom Friedman, Jeffrey Gibson, Andy Goldsworthy, Dieter Hacker, Damien Hirst, Richard Long, Maria Marshall, James Meyer, Ulf Puder, Jeanne Silverthorne, Renée Stout, Marie Watt, Diana Wege, Letha Wilson, Entang Wiharso, and Xi Zhang.

Historically, communities have looked after their ancestral lands and forests with acute care, developing immense amounts of knowledge on how to protect, nurture, and when necessary, rebuild these vital environments. As we take stock of what is effectively a millennia decline, we are witnessing vanishing forests, increased atmospheric carbon levels, but more acutely, disappearing, and contaminated landscapes. Toxic levels of contaminant inevitably effect all levels in society: childhood development, the prison population, mental health, natural disaster, glaciers, rising and disappearing shoreline and bayous. In response, the clearest voice is that of the creative community. A persuasive voice, using visual processes to inform.

The exhibition presents the various ways contemporary artists have grappled with the topic in their studios, some intentional, and others not so. Entang Wiharso’s monumental 43-feet painting, Contaminated Landscape, which lends its title to the exhibition, takes a direct approach. In one long, sweeping narrative, one grasps its significance. The work considers issues of heritage, recycling, destruction, distortion, the imagined, sustainability, old, new, and future worlds, worlds in flux. The debate continues with the other artists, wherein they examine landscape contamination from a political, social, ecological, mythical, and cultural stance. Renée Stout addresses decay, abandonment, skies and landscapes, spirituality, mythology and the heavenly, all in an effort to reconcile the imaginary and reality.

One of the most provocative works in the exhibition is Maria Marshall’s When I Grow Up I Want to be a Cooker. The video shows one of Marshall’s sons as a toddler, appearing to blissfully smoke a cigarette. We experience a feeling of extreme tenderness and discomfort as we watch what we assume to be an infancy addiction to nicotine, one of the most cancerous toxins. The piece effectively is a fictitious reenactment of adult behavior in the face of addiction. James Meyer brings a unique perspective to mass incarceration, as associated with a wide range of social and environmental biases. In his introspective drawings, made while in confinement, he addresses prison hierarchies, material scarcity, religion, lack of personal spaces; in short, the oppressions and horridness of the prison landscape. Tasked with building therapy cages for inmates who were in solitary confinement for life, with Welding Bus, he also addressed the toxic practice of penal labor. Beyond the environmental, from an anthropological level, imprisonment remains a social contaminant on the human psyche.

Damien Hirst’s sculpture addresses the issue of the disposal of toxic chemotherapy waste products following their use in the treatment of cancer patients. The work, I Love Everything About You, while addressing the contamination of cancer, is in fact an immediate acknowledgement of love and resolve in the face of destruction.  Letha Wilson, combining natural and fabricated materials, engages in conversations about space, land, the environment, and their complex history. She considers relationships between the constructed and natural spaces, what they can teach us, and calls for a reversal of their destruction, favoring preservation. Reinvention and reimagined are vital to Michael Brown’s contribution with Sinatra Bucket, 2008 and Billie Holiday Mop, 2008. The work exemplifies his use of salvaged objects. The mop and bucket, created with melted vinyl records, are a direct response to the contemporary mantra of reuse, recycle. Likewise, in a call for salvation and reform, Tom Friedman’s Styrofoam sculpture found a less harmful use for cups made with polystyrene, a material made up of over fifty harmful chemical byproducts, posing a threat to human health and the environment in how it is produced, used, and discarded. With Wile E. Coyote (With Breasts), Studio Floor, Overgrowth, Jeanne Silverthorne introduced a female version of Wile E. Coyote. The coyote’s surrounding is overtaken by parasitic rubber weeds and insects. Are the breasts truly identifying a female version of the beloved character, or the consequence of a contaminated environment? Based on Silverthorne’s investigation of broader issues, and Coyote’s eroded and clearly toxic surroundings, the latter is confirmed.

In addition to the immediate environmental effects, Contaminated Landscape also includes works that examine the psychological, economical, and social effects of toxins as a systemic problem. A problem that affects us in all sorts of ways. It decreases happiness and life satisfaction. It impairs cognitive functioning and decision making. Socially, it exacerbates criminal activities and worsens our political views and perceptions of government on a local and federal level. The creative, scientific, and other communities made a collective appeal for more radical approaches toward cultural and ecological preservation; a loud call to restructure these contaminated landscapes. Artists, activists, and scientists, engage in systemic collaborations to propose solutions. It begins with awareness and understanding. And efforts toward solutions have been in perpetual discussion, but inadequately implemented.

 

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Installation View
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Contaminated Landscape  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Installation view of Contaminated Landscape
Works In Exhibition
Contaminated Landscape The Power of Now, 2016
Mixed Media
38.78 x 37.41 x 110.24 in (98.5 x 95 x 280 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Pawel Althamer

The Power of Now, 2016
Mixed Media
38.78 x 37.41 x 110.24 in (98.5 x 95 x 280 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Left: Frank Sinatra, 2008
Melted vinyl with found bucket parts
14.4 x 12 x 12 in (36.8 x 30.5 x 30.5 in)
Right: Billie Holiday, 2008
Melted vinyl and found mop head
54 x 12 x 12 in (137.16 x 30.5 x 30.5 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Michael Brown

Left: Frank Sinatra, 2008
Melted vinyl with found bucket parts
14.4 x 12 x 12 in (36.8 x 30.5 x 30.5 in)
Right: Billie Holiday, 2008
Melted vinyl and found mop head
54 x 12 x 12 in (137.16 x 30.5 x 30.5 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Untitled (Styrofoam cups), 2002
Styrofoam cups and acrylic paint
166.5 x 3 x 3 in (423 x 7.6 x 7.6 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Tom Friedman

Untitled (Styrofoam cups), 2002
Styrofoam cups and acrylic paint
166.5 x 3 x 3 in (423 x 7.6 x 7.6 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Someone Great is Gone, 2013
Elk hide, Acrylic Paint, Graphite, Colored Pencil
73 x 66 in (185.4 x 167.6 cm)  2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Jeffrey Gibson

Someone Great is Gone, 2013
Elk hide, Acrylic Paint, Graphite, Colored Pencil
73 x 66 in (185.4 x 167.6 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Twenty three sticks beginning with same stump used from previous work made over two days first attempt collapsed when removing support calm Anchorage, 27/28 November 1995
Unique framed cibachrome print with framed text/photo
33.5 x 32.5 x 2 inches (85.09 x 82.55 x 5.08 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Andy Goldsworthy

Twenty three sticks beginning with same stump used from previous work made over two days first attempt collapsed when removing support calm Anchorage, 27/28 November 1995
Unique framed cibachrome print with framed text/photo
33.5 x 32.5 x 2 inches (85.09 x 82.55 x 5.08 cm)

Contaminated Landscape  Twelve sticks each stick frozen to another took all day easier to work before sunrise and after sunset Anchorage, 29 November 1995
Unique framed cibachrome print with framed text/photo
33.5 x 32.5 x 2 inches (85.09 x 82.55 x 5.08 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Andy Goldsworthy

Twelve sticks each stick frozen to another took all day easier to work before sunrise and after sunset Anchorage, 29 November 1995
Unique framed cibachrome print with framed text/photo
33.5 x 32.5 x 2 inches (85.09 x 82.55 x 5.08 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Atem/Breath, 1983
Oil on canvas
78.75 x 78.75 in (200 x 200 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Dieter Hacker

Atem/Breath, 1983
Oil on canvas
78.75 x 78.75 in (200 x 200 cm)

Contaminated Landscape I Love Everything About You, 1994
Steel cage, padlock, and medical waste containers
42 x 84 x 30 in (106.7 x 213.4 x 76.2 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Damien Hirst

I Love Everything About You, 1994
Steel cage, padlock, and medical waste containers
42 x 84 x 30 in (106.7 x 213.4 x 76.2 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Cornwall Circle, 1990
Cornish slate (172 stones)
16.5 x 156 x 156 in (41.91 x 396.2 x 396.2 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Richard Long

Cornwall Circle, 1990
Cornish slate (172 stones)
16.5 x 156 x 156 in (41.91 x 396.2 x 396.2 cm)

Contaminated Landscape When I Grow Up I Want to Be a Cooker, 1998
Laser disc, duration: 20 sec
Edition 3 of 10 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Maria Marshall

When I Grow Up I Want to Be a Cooker, 1998
Laser disc, duration: 20 sec
Edition 3 of 10

Contaminated Landscape Stimmung an der Fulge, 2018
Oil on canvas
39.38 x 47.25 x 1.5 in (100 x 120 x 3.8 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Ulf Puder

Stimmung an der Fulge, 2018
Oil on canvas
39.38 x 47.25 x 1.5 in (100 x 120 x 3.8 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Wile E. Coyote (With Breasts), Studio Floor, Overgrowth, 2019-20
Platinum silicone rubber
15 x 28 x 58 in (38.1 x 71.1 x 147.3 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Jeanne Silverthorne

Wile E. Coyote (With Breasts), Studio Floor, Overgrowth, 2019-20
Platinum silicone rubber
15 x 28 x 58 in (38.1 x 71.1 x 147.3 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Mnemonic Device (Memory Board), 2020
Acrylic paint, rust patina and found microchips on paper
8.75 x 14.75 x 1.5 in (22.23 x 37.47 x 3.81 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Renée Stout

Mnemonic Device (Memory Board), 2020
Acrylic paint, rust patina and found microchips on paper
8.75 x 14.75 x 1.5 in (22.23 x 37.47 x 3.81 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Companion Species (after Self Portrait in the Studio), 2022
Vintage Italian glass beads, industrial felt, thread
14.75 x 33.5 in (37.47 x 85.09 cm)
Photography by Kevin McConnell 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Marie Watt

Companion Species (after Self Portrait in the Studio), 2022
Vintage Italian glass beads, industrial felt, thread
14.75 x 33.5 in (37.47 x 85.09 cm)
Photography by Kevin McConnell

Contaminated Landscape EARTH: The Anthology, 2021
One of a kind Artist's Book
3.63 x 12.25 x 18.63 in (9.2 x 31.1 x 47.3 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Diana Wege

EARTH: The Anthology, 2021
One of a kind Artist's Book
3.63 x 12.25 x 18.63 in (9.2 x 31.1 x 47.3 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Contaminated Landscape, 2021
Acrylic, glitter, polyurethane on canvas
122 x 506.25 in (310 x 1286 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Entang Wiharso

Contaminated Landscape, 2021
Acrylic, glitter, polyurethane on canvas
122 x 506.25 in (310 x 1286 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Mosaic Canyon Lava Concrete Bend, 2020
Concrete, C-print, UV print, aluminum frame
34 x 28 x 1.75 in (86.4 x 71.1 x 4.5 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Letha Wilson

Mosaic Canyon Lava Concrete Bend, 2020
Concrete, C-print, UV print, aluminum frame
34 x 28 x 1.75 in (86.4 x 71.1 x 4.5 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Dream Factory, 2021
Acrylic on canvas
60 x 72 in (152.4 x 182.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
Xi Zhang

Dream Factory, 2021
Acrylic on canvas
60 x 72 in (152.4 x 182.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Picnic, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Picnic, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Indian Camp, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Indian Camp, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Stacked Chairs, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Stacked Chairs, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Top Bunks, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Top Bunks, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Welding Bus 2, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Welding Bus 2, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

Contaminated Landscape Welding Cart, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm) 2022 Marc Straus Gallery
James Meyer

Welding Cart, 2015-2016
Ink on copy paper
8.5 x 11 in (21.6 x 27.9 cm)

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