ABOUT THE FAIR

Muntean/Rosenblum

Booth 722 | Pier 94 | 711 12th Avenue | New York City

Galerie Ron Mandos proudly presents a new group of paintings by Muntean/Rosenblum to The Armory Show 2019, with an additional selection of works by Anthony Goicolea, Hans op de Beeck and Sebastiaan Bremer.

The artist duo Muntean/Rosenblum mixes references from art history with contemporary popular culture. Playing with visual codes from the past and the present, they mostly depict groups of young people – ambiguous scenes seeming to present unresolved situations in the making. In their latest works, the artist duo explores YouTube as a space of contemporary iconography by introducing scenes inspired by video’s gone viral. Their paintings and drawings are often accompanied by captions or texts not directly relating to the depicted scene, adding another layer of complexity.

Muntean/Rosenblum consists of Markus Muntean (AT, 1962) and Adi Rosenblum (IL, 1962). Based in Vienna, they have been collaborating since 1992. Solo exhibitions were held at i.a. MAC, Coruña; MOCAK, Krakow; Parkview Museum, Beijing; Institut für zeitgenössische Kunst, Nürnberg and Tate Britain, London. Group exhibitions they recently participated in were, among others, at Kunsthaus Graz; Nam June Paik Art Centre, Gyeonggi-do; The Parkview Museum, Singapore; Oude Kerk, Amsterdam and MAXXI, Rome. Their work is collected by museums such as MoMA, New York; Albertina, Vienna; Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf; Museum der Moderne Salzburg; Tel Aviv Museum of Art and MUSAC, Léon.

For their presentation at The Armory Fair 2019, Muntean/Rosenblum have invited two other artists to show new works: Anthony Goicolea and Sebastiaan Bremer. During the opening on March 6 at 4pm and 6pm, acclaimed choreographer and artist Jonah Bokaer (US, 1981) will perform a live choreography at the booth, responding to and interacting with the artworks.

Growing up in the Deep South, Anthony Goicolea was socially stigmatized for being Cuban, gay, and Catholic. These circumstances brought about a heightened awareness of social constructs, which continues to influence his work. He created New York’s first public LGBTQ Memorial monument, which was revealed in Hudson River Park last year. For this monument, as well as for the new sculptures debuting at the fair, he takes boulders as a formal starting point. The presentation also includes drawings from the Anonymous Self-portraits series.

Anthony Goicolea (USA, 1971) is a mixed-media artist based in Brooklyn. He has exhibited widely, notably at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, Illinois; the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the International Center of Photography, New York and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid. Goicolea’s art is held in many public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and MoMA, New York.

Using pre-existing images, Sebastiaan Bremer explores ideas about time, memory, melancholy and processing. Experimenting with different techniques and materials to alter photographs, he adds new dimensions, giving the images more possible meanings and shifting the viewer’s perception. He creates hybrid images using collage techniques and by meticulously cutting and carving away sections of emulsion to create etchings on the photographic surface.

Sebastiaan Bremer (NL, 1970) is based in New York. In 2016 Fort Worth Contemporary Arts at TCU held a mid-career retrospective. His work has also been shown at museums including Tate Modern, London; The Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York; Gemeentemuseum, The Hague; Storefront for Art and Architecture, New York; Projektraum I, Berlin; MOCA Tucson and the Warhol Museum, Pittsburg. Bremer's work is represented in collections such as Victoria & Albert Museum, London; MoMA, New York and LACMA, Los Angeles.

Hans Op de Beeck produces large installations, sculptures, films, drawings, paintings and photographs. He seeks to create a form of visual fiction that delivers a moment of wonder, silence and introspection. His monochrome sculptures depicting children are inspired by the artist’s experiences and dreams as a child and evoke notions of innocence and vulnerability.

Hans Op de Beeck (BE, 1969) has shown extensively in solo and group exhibitions around the world, including at the Venice Biennial; Tate Modern, London; Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels; PS1, New York; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Reina Sofia, Madrid; MACRO, Rome; Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC; Tampa Museum of Art and Sammlung Goetz, Munich.

 

ABOUT Anthony Goicolea

Born in 1971 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Lives and works in New York

Anthony Goicolea (USA, 1971) is a first-generation Cuban American artist. He grew up in the Deep South of the United States of America, in the midst of the Cuban refugee crises, coupled with the advent of the AIDS crises, and the rise of the religious right. Goicolea was socially stigmatised for being Cuban, gay, and Catholic. These circumstances brought about a heightened awareness of social constructs, and the changing nature of identity in politics – a theme that continually influences his work. Goicolea explores themes ranging from personal history and identity, cultural tradition and heritage, to alienation and displacement.

His diverse oeuvre encompasses digitally manipulated self-portraits, landscapes, and narrative tableaux executed in a variety of media, including black-and-white and color photography, sculpture and video installations, and multi-layered drawings on Mylar. Best known for his powerful, and often unsettling, staged photographic and video works, Goicolea made his artistic debut in the late 1990s with a series of provocative multiple self-portrait images. These early works featured groups of young boys on the threshold of adolescence, acting out childhood fantasies and bizarre rituals of revelry and social taboo in highly staged domestic or institutional settings or dense, fairy-tale forests. Revealing a playful self-consciousness, they often consisted of complex composites of the artist himself, in all manner of poses and guises. Soon thereafter, Goicolea garnered international attention with his ambiguous, yet strangely compelling, landscapes, ranging from dream-like woodland environments to vast, unforgiving urban and industrial wastelands. The artist has created several series of digitally composited, and heretofore uncharted, topographies, often populated by bands of masked and uniformed figures.

In recent series, many of the images are devoid of humans, although the landscape reflects an anonymous and increasingly tenuous human presence. In these works, primitive lean-tos and crudely constructed shanties coexist in an uneasy union with the technological vestiges of an industrialized society. Suggesting a world on the brink of obsolescence, these chilling images further cement the pervasive undercurrent of human alienation—from one another as well as the natural environment—that can be traced throughout the artist’s work.

Anthony Goicolea has exhibited widely, notably at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, Illinois; the International Center of Photography, New York and Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid. Goicolea’s art is held in many public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; The Guggenheim Museum of Art, New York, NY; The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY; Yale University Art Collection, Photography, CT; the Museum of Contemporary Art of Castile and Leon, Spain;  21c Museum, Louisville, KY, the Akzo Nobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection, among others.

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ABOUT Hans Op de Beeck

Hans Op de Beeck was born in 1969 in Turnhout, BE
He lives and works in Brussels, BE

Hans Op de Beeck produces large installations, sculptures, films, drawings, paintings, photographs and texts. His work is a reflection on our complex society and the universal questions of meaning and mortality that resonate within it. He regards man as a being who stages the world around him in a tragi-comic way. Above all, Op de Beeck is keen to stimulate the viewers’ senses, and invite them to really experience the image. He seeks to create a form of visual fiction that delivers a moment of wonder and silence.

Over the past twenty years Op de Beeck realised numerous monumental ‘sensorial’ installations, in which he evoked what he describes as ‘visual fictions’: tactile deserted spaces as an empty set for the viewer to walk through or sit down in, sculpted havens for introspection. In many of his films though, in contrast with those depopulated spaces, he prominently depicts anonymous characters.

Hans Op de Beeck was born in Turnhout in 1969. He lives and works in Brussels, Belgium. Op de Beeck has shown his work extensively in solo and group exhibitions around the world.

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ABOUT Muntean / Rosenblum

Markus Muntean was born in 1962 in Graz, Austria. Adi Rosenblum was born in 1962 in Haifa, Israel.
Muntean/Rosenblum live and work in Vienna, the city where they met while studying at the end of the 1980s. The artists have collaborated since 1992.

Large-scale painting is one of the core aspects of their practice. However, they often expand their work by creating large installations with sculptural elements where performances are staged or films screened. In addition, they make drawings as well as collages with texts and photographs.

In their work, Muntean/Rosenblum mix references to art history and present-day popular culture. They mostly depict groups of apparently lethargic or melancholic young people in idle situations, which are either ordinary and everyday or mysterious and ambiguous. The often-dreamy scenes take place in rooms, public spaces or landscapes as if part of a film, presenting unresolved situations in the making. The characters seem to adopt postures copied from fashion magazines, or from paintings originating from the renaissance to the nineteenth century. Their work is frequently accompanied by captions or texts not-directly relating to the depicted scene, adding another layer of complexity. The artists themselves described their work as ‘precise ambiguity’. By playing with visual codes from the past and the present, Muntean/Rosenblum scrutinise the power of images and how these constitute an overwhelming collective memory.

Work by Muntean/Rosenblum has been exhibited widely in international museums, institutions and galleries. Recent solo exhibitions were at Espacio Marte, Mexico City (2020); MAC, Coruña (2018); MOCAK, Krakow (2018); Group exhibitions they recently participated in were, among others, at Tel Aviv Museum of Art (2019); Kunsthaus Graz (2018); Nam June Paik Art Centre, Gyeonggi-do (2018); The Parkview Museum, Singapore (2017); and Oude Kerk, Amsterdam (2016). Their work is included in both private and public collections, such as the MoMA, New York NY; the Albertina, Vienna; 21c Museum, Louisville, KY; the KRC Collection, Voorschoten; The Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection.

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ABOUT Sebastiaan Bremer

Sebastiaan Bremer’s artistic career spans across disciplines and media, but he has become particularly renowned for his ability to transform pre-existing images into ornate, dreamlike tableaux through a careful process of enlargement and intricate hand painting that results in completely unique works.

The use of found imagery as a basis to explore ideas about time and memory has long been central to Bremer’s practice, and in the late 1990s he began experimenting with drawing directly onto the surface of photographs. Initially working with snapshots of family members or familiar places, Bremer developed his signature technique of printing the pictures in an enlarged format—well beyond conventional dimensions—and then altering and embellishing the underlying scene with delicate patterns of dots and strokes using India ink and photographic dye, or applying splashes of paint.

Over the past decades, Bremer has used this approach to create a progression of distinct bodies of work, expanding the scope of his source materials from purely personal moments to an array of images that have captured his imagination or held significance in his life. These range from adaptations of Rembrandt etchings to Brassaï’s photographs of Picasso’s studio and Bill Brandt’s series of close-up images of his famous subjects’ eyes, as well as the vintage lithographic flower prints used in Bremer’s Bloemen series.

Whether starting from the work of an iconic artist or revisiting his own family albums, Bremer’s choice of visual documents is rooted in his biography. Hints of his native Holland permeate his work, from his appreciation of the way light falls across a room reminiscent of a Vermeer interior to the exquisitely painted addition of a pointillist feather or flowers to a contemporary photograph that transports the viewer to the world of Dutch Old Master paintings. In engaging with images of others, he is constantly investigating his own memories and thoughts, weaving a dialogue between the underlying photograph and the marks he uses to transform but never completely obscure it, thus creating a physical representation of the confluence of our inner and outer lives.

Sebastiaan Bremer studied at the Vrije Academie, The Hague and Skowhegan School of Art and Sculpture, Maine. The artist currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. His work has been the subject of three major catalogs: Monkey Brain (2003), Avila (2006), and To Joy (2015), and has been exhibited in such venues as the Tate Gallery, London; the Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York; The Gemeentemuseum, The Hague; and the Aldrich Museum, Connecticut. Bremer’s work is in the permanent collections of institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

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