In Our Masthead: Haute Romantics Artist Sebastian Mlynarski

by Paddy Johnson on February 8, 2010 · 15 comments Events


Sebastian Mlynarski, art fag city
Sebastian Mlynarski, Would This Be The Time, 2009, 32 x 40 inches, C-Print

Masthead artist Sebastian Mlynarski is one of twelve New York and Miami based artists participating in Haute Romantics, an Art Fag City curated exhibition at Verge Gallery and Studio Project. Opening in Sacramento this Thursday, the exhibition includes work by Katherine Bernhardt, The Delusional Downtown Divas, Naomi Fisher, Paul Gabrielli, K8 Hardy, Cian McConn with Kristen Jensen, Ryan McGinley, Sebastian Mlynarski, Asher Penn, Maximilian Schubert, Peter Sutherland, and Sara VanDerBeek.

Haute Romantics examines a growing subsection of  artists creating work that maps the ideals of late 18th century Romanticism. Untamed landscape, aesthetic beauty, escapism, youth — these themes not only permeate the exhibition, but build upon a period three hundred years passed, in which emotion was seen as a crucial authentic source of aesthetic experience. While the geography and living conditions specific to New York may, at least in part, inform this renewed sensitivity, it clearly extends beyond the city’s borders.

Showcased in our masthead this week, Haute Romantics artist Sebastian Mlynarski uses in-camera, multiple exposures to create images that challenge the notion of stable perceptions.  Layered and spontaneous, these pictures mirror an unpredictable landscape, often evolving just as much through chance as by a willful change.

A full press release for the show after the jump.

Sebastian Mlynarski, art fag city
Sebastian Mlynarski, When I Ask For You, 2009, 32×40, C-Print

Sebastian Mlynarski, art fag city
Sebastian Mlynarski, And You Come And Stay, 2009, 32 x 40 inches, C-Print

HAUTE ROMANTICS

February 11th — March 20th, 2010

Verge Gallery and Art Fag City are pleased to announce their collaboration on Haute Romantics, a group show highlighting the work of twelve artists and collaboratives exhibiting in New York. The exhibition includes work by Katherine Bernhardt, The Delusional Downtown Divas, Naomi Fisher, Paul Gabrielli, K8 Hardy, Cian McConn with Kristen Jensen, Ryan McGinley, Sebastian Mlynarski, Asher Penn, Maximilian Schubert, Peter Sutherland, and Sara VanDerBeek.

Haute Romantics examines a growing subsection of artists creating work that maps the ideals of late 18th century Romanticism. Untamed landscape, aesthetic beauty, escapism, youth — these themes not only permeate the exhibition, but build upon a period three hundred years passed, in which emotion was seen as a crucial authentic source of aesthetic experience. While the geography and living conditions specific to New York may, at least in part, inform this renewed sensitivity, it clearly extends beyond the city’s borders.

Notably, much of the work included in the exhibition capitalizes on fashion as subject matter, an industry similarly influenced by Romanticism. Ryan McGinley, well-known for his commercial photography work, presents a figurative collage put together while working at Vice Magazine. Also working in collage, Sara VanDerBeek and Asher Penn respectively create and source manipulated fashion photography; each taking a somber tone while alluding to a confused, distorted memory. Katherine Bernhardt's giant expressionistic paintings of swatches, by contrast, seem almost celebratory.

Rather than using pre-existing fashion magazines and ads as material or inspiration, K8 Hardy creates a gender-renegade fashion identity of her own. The exhibition of Hardy's magazine spreads coincides with the launch of her new clothing line J'APPROVE. Cian McConn and Kristen Jensen's melancholic performance project “Vacation from Mine” is an improvisational response to their surroundings. Naomi Fisher and Sebastian Mlynarski's photography contrasts our connection with nature against the order of contemporary culture. Fisher also showcases like-minded drawings in the show.

Like Mlynarski, some artists address the subject of fashion tangentially, or even not at all. Taking a very quiet approach to his art making practice, Paul Gabrielli, employs beauty in light and form to express the poignancy of a single thought. Peter Sutherland's documental photography meditates on beauty with a focus on the banal while the wax trompe l’oeil vanitas sculptures of Maximilian Schubert suggest a similarly quiet Romanticism within the everyday.

The exhibition isn't without its own form of meta-textual introspection; The Delusional Downtown Divas offer a satirical look at the intersection of beauty, the ideals of late 18th century Romanticism, and fashion. Haute Romantics highlights four episodes from their self-titled video series, each focused on the attempts of three privileged young artists' to enter the New York art world. If this show (in addition to hosting Rob Pruitt's Art Awards at the Guggenheim) is any indication, they appear to have done just that.

Haute Romantics runs from February 11th through March 20th. An opening reception will take place at the gallery on February 11th and again on the 13th as part of a larger circuit of openings occurring across the city. Art Fag City Editor-in-Chief Paddy Johnson will deliver a lecture about the show on the 18th of February at the Gallery.

This exhibition was originally conceived by Karen Archey for Art Fag City.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Nature Photography February 10, 2010 at 12:34 am

wow, what a nice view. i love the view!

Reply

Nature Photography February 9, 2010 at 8:34 pm

wow, what a nice view. i love the view!

Reply

Marina Galperina February 11, 2010 at 8:51 pm

This is beautiful, and not just in contrast to prior butt crack.

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Marina Galperina February 11, 2010 at 4:51 pm

This is beautiful, and not just in contrast to prior butt crack.

Reply

Vanessa Alexandra February 17, 2010 at 5:05 pm

Very nice, wish I could visit the exhibition

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Vanessa Alexandra February 17, 2010 at 1:05 pm

Very nice, wish I could visit the exhibition

Reply

Esteban February 19, 2010 at 6:38 pm

the show looks beautiful. can you post more pics?

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Esteban February 19, 2010 at 2:38 pm

the show looks beautiful. can you post more pics?

Reply

onomato February 21, 2010 at 7:42 pm

nudes+landscapes. How droll!

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onomato February 21, 2010 at 3:42 pm

nudes+landscapes. How droll!

Reply

JIb March 4, 2010 at 10:16 am

Great Show! Here In Sacramento. Very Very Interesting Work! Melting Sculptures, Video Work, Huge Paintings. A Must See!

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JIb March 4, 2010 at 6:16 am

Great Show! Here In Sacramento. Very Very Interesting Work! Melting Sculptures, Video Work, Huge Paintings. A Must See!

Reply

fr. April 18, 2010 at 2:48 pm

Dear Paddy,

for the last two days i was trying to make up my mind about this tidal wave of new romantics esp. in photography. you seem to be the first that actually picks up this observation and curates a show about it. I’d be heavily interested in your thoughts on this topic. Did you write some text about this movement or let others do it? Can one find it on the web somewhere? Did you produce a printed catalogue (for non kindle owners)?

looking forward to an answer,
best wishes from vienna
florian.

Reply

fr. April 18, 2010 at 10:48 am

Dear Paddy,

for the last two days i was trying to make up my mind about this tidal wave of new romantics esp. in photography. you seem to be the first that actually picks up this observation and curates a show about it. I’d be heavily interested in your thoughts on this topic. Did you write some text about this movement or let others do it? Can one find it on the web somewhere? Did you produce a printed catalogue (for non kindle owners)?

looking forward to an answer,
best wishes from vienna
florian.

Reply

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