Art fairs can be dizzying experiences. There is only so much that the eye can take in, so much that the mind can absorb. Which is why, so often, galleries depend on splashy statements or well-trodden works in an effort to attract attention. At Istanbul’s ArtInternational, London gallery Gazelli Art House takes a lighter touch, featuring a range of work by artists at different points in their careers that are all easy on the eyes.
One work that hints at the art world’s blockbuster impulse is Stanley Casselman’s Inhaling Richter #16 (2012), which, as the name suggests, recalls the iconic squeegee paintings of German artist Gerhard Richter. With its blurred bands of acrylic colors reminiscent of a badly tuned television, the piece is part of a series that started when art critic Jerry Saltz put out a call for artists to attempt to recreate Richter’s works on a budget. Its jewel-like tones and textured surface are echoed in a C-Print by Anthony Aziz and Sammy Cucher of Aziz + Cucher, in which Spanish moss takes on impressionistic purple and chartreuse.
On the subtler side are the works of two 2010 Slade MFA grads, South Korean artist Shan Hur and British artist Saad Qureshi. Hur’s offerings include three ceramic plates, each broken down the center, their soft cornflower blue surfaces detailed with seascapes. The split works seem like artifacts from an unknown era, a continuation of Hur’s practice of embedding ceramics directly in gallery walls as though they were being excavated on the spot. Qureshi works in a similarly pared-down palette, creating scenes of Pakistan in wax pencil on wood, which he paints a range of easter egg colors. Ambiguous and undetailed, the drawings have the undefined sense of a memory or dream.