Arts and Entertainment
January 11, 2018From: DC Moore Gallery
DC Moore Gallery is pleased to announce Mediation Inc., an exhibition of fifteen paintings by Michael Stamm. This will be the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. Depicting moments of the everyday in an era of extreme political and cultural volatility, Stamm’s work exudes a curious ambivalence. On one hand the paintings emit an air of melancholy, one of the zeitgeists many ailments – but uncritically, not in an attempt to subvert or satirize, but rather to probe, tenderly, at the moment and the contours of feeling that we’d rather keep in the shadows. Indeed, Stamm’s subjects wear a certain kind of sadness, always unrepentantly and often literally. But on the other hand, his paintings really want to be happy, both embracing and dramatizing the new phenomenon of self-care: the palliatives, the elixirs, the therapies that have become shorthand for trying to live a good life under the shadow of late capitalism. In the new-millennial epoch, the concept of self-care itself has become an implement of revolution; where the desire to make and sustain meaningful connections is at odds with those who seek to shut down borders, dissolve communications. His work is neither mocking of, nor cynical towards either station but rather approaches both from a metaphysical, abstracted position, centering the figure right at their uneasy nexus. Political without being pugnacious, Stamm creates an intimacy that tries to emphasize rather than grapple with the dialectics of conflict, both external and internal.
Among the works on view are eight separate paintings that iterate single sessions with a therapist. Tacitly referring to his own experience during therapy, in which Stamm often felt unable to look that his therapist in the eyes and so averted his gaze, the paintings only depict a torso in various modes of dress and decoration. Through compositions that seamlessly merge disparate visual and stylistic vocabularies, Stamm’s paintings nonetheless present the full range of emotions that might be expressed within confines of a therapist’s office and attempt to harmonize the cast of embattled viewpoints that a mediator is designed to navigate.
Michael Stamm (b. 1983) was raised in Evanston, Illinois. He received his BA from Wesleyan University and an MA in English Literature from Columbia University before earning an MFA from New York University in 2016. He has also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. Stamm’s first solo exhibition, Just Like This Please was presented at Thierry Goldberg Gallery, New York in 2016. His work has also been shown widely in group exhibitions, amongst them shows at Underdonk, Brooklyn, ASHES/ASHES, Los Angeles, and Galerie Tobias Naehring, Leipzig. Residencies include the Mountain School of Arts, Los Angeles (2017) and Yaddo (2016), and the Vermont Studio Center (2016), where he was awarded the John Imber Painting Fellowship. The artist lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
Exhibition Date: January 4 – February 3, 2018
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00am – 6:00pm
DC Moore Gallery,
535 West 22nd Street
New York, NY 10001
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