NADA Miami 2012 showcases a range of work from sophisticated solo projects to glimpses of artists who, while still growing in practice, display signs of sincere promise. Here is a small selection of artists worth remembering.
Marko Mäetamm presents a solo project, Our Daddy is a Hunter, 2011 at emerging Estonian gallery, Temnikova and Kasela. This installation encompasses watercolor drawings, sculpture, print and video. Drawing on the dual viewpoints of both father and child, this series tenses on the line between dark and playful. Highly personal, Mäetamm unfolds before the viewer his personal anxieties at the pressures placed on a modern day, working, family man. The sculpture in the corner is a portrait of Mäetamm wrapped in a living room rug, not standing upright yet not on the floor, willingly captured in this domestic situation. With imagery of the father hunting his family in their domestic environment, the watercolors create mixed anxiety for the viewer. The handwritten text reads from a child’s perspective exerts such as:
“Our Daddy has a big hunting gun, It is very heavy, And very dangerous, And it makes a big noise, When our daddy starts to shoot”
This child, however, also wants to be just like daddy when he grows up. This childlike reverence of the father figure as a hunter, unaware of the dangers that await him in society as a man, strains against the imagery above, and somehow reverberates out into the viewer the mixed emotions and anxieties felt by Mäetamm himself. However, the playful nature of the drawings reminds us that this is a modern day family life, and while these strains may be placed upon the man of the house, it is a place he has willingly placed himself amongst the family he loves.
At Brennan & Griffin , Sandeep Mukherjee’s Devour, 2011 captures attention without demanding attention. This subtle work, elegant in execution, is created with acrylic and acrylic inks on duralene (a polymer film.) With a range of brushstrokes and exquisite mark making, Mukherjee engages the viewer with a material practice based on instinct and improvisation. The final form grows from a combination of organic material influences and an organic, intuitive process. He is interested in blending the process of image with generic iconography. With Devour the dark area could represent a plain, the colored area a generic, organic form (such as a seashell) though Mukgerjee references such forms implicitly.
Bischoff Weiss wowed with a challenging and complex solo presentation of Raphael Zarka. A risky and demanding presentation for an art fair audience, this booth, for those who paid due time and diligence to the work, delivered a highly sophisticated presentation. Since 2001, Zarka has been assembling a mass of forgotten or neglected sculptural forms in a series know as Les Formes du Repos (Resting forms.)
According to Suzanne Cotter: Zarka captures the sculptural possibilities of these forms as images, such that the abandoned, the disused, and the forgotten become sites of potential, with a lexicon of formal associations that runs from Plato to modernism to postminimalist sculpture.
Years of living as a keen skateboarder have enabled him view the geometry of shapes and surface dynamics of objects in a way that the standard observer of such opportunities would fail to perceive, his work opening up this dialogue to the viewer.
Images courtesy of:
Jessica Silverman Gallery
Temnikova and Kasela
Brennan & Griffin
Independent Curators International