Elizabeth XI Bauer presents Theodore Ereira-Guyer: The Thicket

The Elizabeth Xi Bauer Art Gallery has announced Theodore Ereira-Guyer’s exhibition The thicket, his first solo presentation at the Gallery. The artist will show a series of never-before-seen large-scale prints that continue his ongoing investigation into the subject of memory – what is kept and what is left behind.

The engraving process, in particular the way Ereira-Guyer practices it, necessarily involves a loss of information between the plate and the paper. Although it is a technique aimed at reproducibility, Ereira-Guyer favors the generation of only one or a few compositions per board – each time a print is made, different aspects are highlighted while others are lost. Ereira-Guyer thus establishes a parallel between engraving and the very mechanism of recollection. In this exhibition, a selection of the etchings presented are hung on the walls, in a more conventional way, while others are arranged in space, on structures that look like screens. This maze-like architecture aims to create an immersive environment where viewers feel interwoven with the works, encouraging a sense of intimacy between person and object.

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In The thicketthe artist exhibits both a homonymous series and another titled the pond. Both are magnanimously sized, almost at the limit of what can be done with paper without tearing the material. Each series has fundamental aesthetic differences. the pond the works are horizontal compositions with images, as the artist clearly indicates in the title, which deal with the muddy vegetation typical of these environments. They hang on the walls as individual works at low height, close to the ground, imitating ponds as they exist in nature. These etchings are fixed on wooden boards tinted with bright colors; each of the combinations aims to create a harmonious palette between composition and wood.

Theodore Ereira – Guyer: The Thicket (2022) installation plan. Photography: Richard Ivey. Courtesy of the artist and the Elizabeth Xi Bauer Gallery, London.

The homonymous series follows contrasting patterns between wood and paper, for example combining an orange frame with a dark green composition, or a green frame with a blue one. Moreover, in these works, the wood has a sculptural quality, occupying space in addition to serving as a support. These billboard-like structures invite visitors to walk in front and behind them – although the prints are only attached to the front of the structures. Contrary to the pond, these works are vertical compositions that are exhibited in groups of three, creating a sense of continuity and storytelling between the different parts, enhanced by the fact that these unique works share a color palette. A direct relationship between title and imagery is also evident in these works: the prints are rich and lush with a variety of plants.

The artist completes this presentation with a series of blue sculptures entitled Columns in pigmented plaster, scattered throughout the exhibition space, acting as punctuation marks. Both in the way they are molded and in the way they are colored, they appear unfinished, ambiguous as to whether they are still being made or already falling apart. The works echo the statement of the anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss, during his visit to Sao Paulo, Brazil, in the 1930s, in which he declared: “Here, everything seems to be under construction, but it is already in ruins “. In this series, Ereira-Guyer continues to address the unreliable and often fleeting nature of passing time and memory.

Theodore Ereira – Guyer: The Thicket (2022) installation plan. Photography: Richard Ivey. Courtesy of the artist and the Elizabeth Xi Bauer Gallery, London.

Théodore Ereira-Guyer: The thicket from 13e May – 30e June 2022, open Wednesday to Saturday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. or by appointment. For more information visit www.elizabethxibauer.com

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