19 Jan 2017, by IngeGerrebrands
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From January 26 until March 4, Atelier Van Lieshout, Sebastian Brajkovic, Frederik Molenschot, Studio Drift, and Studio Job will be part of 'Art Light' at Carpenters Workshop Gallery in New York. Each artist’s work will be presented as a solo show highlighting the best of their sculptural lighting designs.
Cast in bronze and typical of its characteristic dark humour and fixation on dystopia, Dutch design studio Atelier Van Lieshout’s ‘Helmet lamp #2’ and ‘Crypto Helmet Lamp #1’ take lamps beyond their aesthetic purpose, inspiring deep reflection and sobriety. Artist Joep van Lieshout founded Atelier Van Lieshout in 1995 for conceptual reasons. His work explores ecology, ideology, philosophy, human existence, life and death. Combining Surrealist and Minimalist forms in his sculpture, Van Lieshout creates controversial thematic bodies of work which might be interpreted as sinister, while also conveying humour. Atelier Van Lieshout’s installations experiment with media, the boundary between art, architecture and human constructions, whilst exploring the position of man in society, autarky, organisational systems and relationships with reproduction and power. For ‘Art Light’, the gallery will also show the iconic ‘Pappamamma Lamp’ in a finely-crafted polished Bronze. At first seemingly abstract, a closer look reveals the representation of human conception with a dissected female and male reproductive organ, united by a foetus connected to an umbilical cord of light. A work typical of Atelier van Lieshout’s dark, deep yet decorative aesthetic.
The ‘Lathe Lamp’ expresses a notion largely explored by the design's movement. The symmetrical, rotated form turned out of aluminium on a CNC lathe machine is a great combination of advanced technique and sculptural approach. The ‘Lathe’ series, expanded for his first solo show at the Carpenters Workshop Gallery in 2008, returns to Brajkovic's original fascination with rotation and the idea of turned furniture. Through his in-depth explorations of the theoretical and the technical, Sebastian Brajkovic creates an aesthetic balance of structure, freedom and form. Sculpted by hand before being moulded, the sculpture is a perfect result of traditional savoir-faire and new digital techniques, harnessing the possibilities of contemporary design aids. Brajkovic expresses a series of constant contradictions: between past and present, theory and practice, convention and innovation. ‘When I like the old, I show the new in the old. When I am drawn to function I consider the deconstruction of this function, when I convey movement, it best explains itself in stillness. Juxtapositions reveal each other’s appearance’.
Born in the Netherlands in 1981 and a graduate of the renowned Design Academy in Eindhoven, Frederik Molenschot is part of the internationally acclaimed Dutch Design movement. Molenschot founded Studio Molen in 2005 and has been working with a group of talented professionals in the field of art and design ever since. An impressive bronze chandelier, ‘CL Manhattan’, will be shown in this exhibition. Inspired by futuristic nocturnal cityscapes, this work reveals the designer’s deep interest in the artificial and natural elements of our surroundings in public spaces. The gallery will also celebrate the designer’s ‘Cosmos’ series of smaller works focused on the delicacy of the light shades used in his larger chandeliers. An exercise in skilful bronze patination, the darker shade encasing contrasts dramatically against the brilliance of the polished gold surface inside, lit by a poignant LED inside.
Studio Drift's stunning work 'Fragile Future Chandelier New York' will be featured in 'Art Light'. The Amsterdam-based design studio’s work is a site-specific light installation that directly interacts with its surroundings. The light mimics the behaviour of a flock of birds in flight, symbolizing the conflict between humans, the safety of a group and the freedom of the individual. It is made up of delicate glass tubes that light up in an unpredictable way, partially responsive to external stimuli. Founded in 2007 by Lonneke Gordijn and Ralph Nauta, Studio Drift creates site-specific installations and interactive sculptures that deal with space and light, by playing with existing and new relationships between nature, technology and mankind. Studio Drift uses advanced technology and fine craftsmanship. Each new work attempts to make some kind of future prediction. They have produced multi-disciplinary installations, sculptures, objects and films and their works have been acquired by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, The Rijksmuseum, and Museum Voorlinden.
Emblematic pieces by the Dutch/Belgian duo Studio Job will be shown in this exhibition such as the ‘Banana Lamp’ series, ‘Black cat’ or the ‘Tour Eiffel Lamp’. These works subtly play with erotic imagery combined with decorative tradition. The works have recently been included as part of a retrospective dedicated to them at the MAD (Museum of Art and Design) in New York in 2016. Job Smeets and Nynke Tynagel created Studio Job in 2000 with the aim to create unique contemporary design in their self-styled “New Gothic” aesthetic. Their work is heavily influenced by experimentation with freedom of expression. Despite the humour in their work, Studio Job takes craftsmanship very seriously. There are no fewer than 25 artisans found in their studio combining traditional crafts with contemporary techniques like 3D printing to create their repertoire. Studio Job has pieces in 40 museums globally, and they have exhibited in countless shows in the world’s most prestigious galleries.
Carpenters Workshop Gallery produces and exhibits functional sculptures by international rising and established artists and designers going outside their traditional territories of expression. The gallery relies on the partnership of childhood friends, Julien Lombrail and Loic le Gaillard. Carpenters Workshop is actively involved in the research and production of the limited edition works exhibited. It transcends classical borders in terms of art and design, as its proposal stands just at the intersection of these two universes, reaching precisely a symbiosis of art and design. The gallery's choices are guided by the research of an emotional, artistic and historical relevance; relevance that appears as evidence.