Monday, October 6, 2008

Jennifer Coates in New York by Chris Bors

NEW YORK—Jennifer Coates takes pleasure in the act of painting and revels in the potential of a medium that has been declared dead and come back to life so many times that it now seems fresher than ever. The New York–based artist — who also writes on art for such publications as Time Out New York — engages in a tug-of-war with each work to come up with a unique answer to the age-old question, When is a painting done? In her latest solo exhibition at Kinz, Tillou + Feigen in New York (through October 18), there are no cookie-cutter formulas. Rather, the determined Coates creates varied but cohesive works that hearken back to Abstract Expressionism, with colonies of geometric forms that both float in nebulous spaces, and, rendered mostly in bright hues, pop from the surface...

To read the rest of the Artinfo review and my five exhibition picks, click herek.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Solo Show: New Paintings & Drawings at Kinz Tillou & Feigen

"Thoughts for Naught" acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches, 2008

September 9-October 18, 2008
529 West 20th Street, 11th Floor

Kinz, Tillou & Feigen

Untitled Drawing

Untitled, ink on paper, 22 x 30 inches, 2008

Sharon Mesmer

In her current work, Jennifer Coates — a shy, comatose woodland creature who re-percolates her own nervous activity with fluorescent paints — deploys nocturnal unicorn boners in hyper-animated sexual frenzy as anchors for expanses of atmospheric radiance to construe a perfect storm of "a-ha!" moments. Coates retro-fits the unicorn's embattled sexuality to exist external to the world: impoverished ethnic communities are instantly turned into war zones once normative gendered binarisms are undone by aggressively concocted rococo surfaces erupting from a field of aqueous blackness. Influenced by her dead grandmother's dread of humanity, Coates seems to grin, toothless and catnapping, at the festering miasma of shrieking middle-aged dirtbags fully invested in their own muscular dystopia of crunking halitosis. Coates' indeterminate woodsy abysses create tension between Elton John and Celine Dion, and eclipse even the brute, unmediated experience of observing Pamela Anderson performing with the band Comus without her makeup. And while the shock of seeing one of Coates' huge moons coming at you with a mouth open to bite is not a pleasant or normal experience (and for many thi
s kind of "art" is the Antichrist), the underlying philosophy is as lucent as the silence of God Itself, implying all the unapologetic lathered linearity of tripe pierogis glowing praeternaturally in the midnight neon of a flyspeck diner on the magical edge of reality.
Sharon Mesmer


acrylic on canvas, 16x 20 inches, 2008

Polar Shift

acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches, 2008


acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches, 2008

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Clipper 2007

Click here to read Art Fag City's mention of a painting at the Kinz, Tillou & Feigen booth at the Pulse Art Fair in New York City, February 2007.

Solo Exhibition at Feigen Contemporary, May 2006

Review in New York Arts Magazine

Fantasy, Melancholy and Angst:
By Miriam Kienle and Joelle Jensen

Three concurrent solo exhibitions at Feigen Contemporary featuring artists Jennifer Coates, Susanne Simonson and Nick Blinko form a divine comedy, conjuring visions of heaven, hell and purgatory. Coates' celestial landscapes are infused with brilliant color and soft radiance; Simonson's paintings of spectral figures exist between murky realms of longing, memory and physicality, and Blinko's drawings depict demonic domains where piety has gone awry. Although disparate in tone, each artist presents a psychological terrain replete with nostalgic expressiveness.

Coates paints fantastical environments where atmospheric abstraction merges with detailed geometric or organic patterning. Tangled clusters creep into many of the landscapes, like kudzu beginning to blanket the topography. In Creeper vine-like forms disintegrate into a biomorphic field just below the horizon line. A brightly colored, tangled organism rises up from the dark pool that divides the painting in half. Coates' work is ripe with mystical implications. In Softwall a faceted, multi-colored cloud pulsates above a dark void, emerging like an epiphany. Mythical landscapes, which combine amorphous natural forms, thin fields of color and dense areas of precision are reminiscent of Laura Owens and Peter Doig. Some of Coates' works, including Softwall, have the potential to distinguish the artist from her contemporaries, while others simply strike a chord within a prevalent movement.

Simonson's adjacent images show figures in peril, trapped between worlds. Like fleeting moments of stereoscopic vision, her photo-based paintings depict vaporous figures merging with ambiguous objects. Unlikely planes overlap to create settings of disquietude. The artist uses broad swaths of bright color to punch-up muted, fluid under-paintings. The paintings are most successful when they elude the flatness of the photographs from which they are derived and reveal complex areas of flux. In Winter Silence Simonson superimposes shifting profiles of a youthful face and layers of wistful expression to form a modeled bust. This unstable figure floats atop a transparent cube, which contains a winter landscape and encapsulates a strong sense of melancholia.

While Simonson contends with the world as mirage, Blinko plunges into an underworld of his own creation. Blinko, front man for the band Rudimentary Peni, creates anxiety-ridden dystopias rife with religious iconography, weaponry, crowds of scowling masks and death. Blinko's masculine, gothic, punk rock sensibility dominates pages torn from notebooks of his tight, maniacal mark-making. The works in the exhibition that are more literal fulfill our expectation of "schizophrenic drawing," like Birth of the Mad Babies or Boneyard Eruption. An untitled drawing distinguishes itself as scrawling marks give way to deliberate line-work, articulating a red billowing sky. To equal success, the geometric logic of Ununtitled II (Minutiae Marginalia) harnesses what threatens to be an entropic scene.

Heart As Arena 2006

Hallucination, acrylic on canvas, 24 x 30 inches.
Click here for Brent Burket's post on our studio visit in February, 2006.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

First Solo Exhibit at Luxe Gallery, 2004

Click here to read the review in the December 2004 issue of M magazine by Joyce Korotkin.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Colored Pencil 2004

Click here to read the review of Colored Pencil at KS Art by Amanda Church for Art on Paper.