Simon Lee Gallery is pleased to present works by British Canadian artist Angela Bulloch at the seventh edition of Art021 Contemporary Art Fair in Shanghai this November. The booth is a combination of Night Sky works, sculptures, a Paravent and a wall painting.
The Night Sky works are made from three dimensional maps of the universe, giving us views of well-known constellations from ordinarily unreachable positions. The mathematical systems so often at the heart of the artist’s work, suggest that all is not as it seems. The arrangement of the points of light in each panel of a Night Sky, with pulsing stars and winking far away worlds, recreates a particular view of a planet or a constellation taken from a vantagepoint deep into the universe, far from earth. Night Skies re-imagine the familiar patterns of the stars which we see from earth, and in this reimagining, suggest our own ability to shift from the real to the virtual realm and to experience that which we can never really see. Most notably, theanyspacewhatever (2008) at the Solomon R. Guggenheim New York presented Firmamental Night Sky: Oculus.12 (2008), an architectural intervention which opened to a constant view of a spectacular Night Sky, suspended within the famous Frank Lloyd Wright rotunda.
Bulloch’s sculptures and wall paintings manifest her interest in systems, patterns and rules, as well as the creative territory between mathematics and aesthetics. The totemic form of Bulloch’s rhomboid sculptures suggests a similar oscillation between virtual and real space, from a digital origin - inside a 3D drawing application - to an analogue materiality. Conceived and designed within a digital imaging programme, the reductive geometric forms of the sculptures have a retro-futurity, borne of the digital realm yet recalling the classical ‘Modernism of Brancusi’s Endless Column’. The colours of its facets create an illusionistic flatness which transports the viewer back into a virtual space. As in the Night Sky works, the generation of forms, from a digital geometric origin, creates a sense of displacement - a sense that the physical materiality of the work is a product of a geometric concept and could at any point evaporate back into the notional world of the artist’s imagination.
The idiosyncratic physical geometry of the sculptures are suggestive of the anthropomorphic qualities we subconsciously attribute to inanimate objects, creating an intriguing paradox in the nuanced interrelation between elements of the human and non-living world. Like the human condition changing through the development of new interfaces continuously taking on a more traceable volume as an immaterial entity, these forms transgress both digital and physical space. The irregularity of the totem-like sculptures and the fluctuating nature of the paravent animates the surfaces of the sculptures and engages the visitor.