Five Themes to Find in TWO x TWO

Artsy Editorial
Oct 16, 2013 3:21PM

Given the range of top-notch artists whose works are included, the TWO x TWO auction offers a compelling snapshot of current trends in contemporary art. There’s a lot to choose from, but we’ve singled out five themes that emerge in this year’s selection. (Like what you see? Be sure to register to bid!)

Experimental photographic processes: Many contemporary artists are keeping photography relevant by pushing its boundaries with experimental processes—like Walead Beshty’s rigorous compositions made in the darkroom (whose parameters are expounded in the work’s title), Jeff Zilm’s conversion of old film reels into an emulsion that he applies to canvas, or Sam Falls’ over-painted photograms, which also bring us to...

Rigid geometry: One of the cornerstones of Modernism, minimal geometry and the grid are still very much alive in the practices of artists like Matthew Chambers, Daniel Buren, and José Dávila. The latter references one of the most iconic examples of geometry in art: Josef Albers’ “Homage to the Square” series.

Focus on process: Several artists included in this year’s auction make the process of art-making the main focus of the work itself—like Nathan Hylden’s painted shadows of objects in his studio, Fernanda Gomes’s paintbrush caked with paint (presumably applied by another of its kind), or Mai-Thu Perret’s ceramic that bears the markings of the utensil in its name on its surface.

Trompe l’oeil: A favorite technique of pre-modern painters—literally meaning to “trick the eye” with hyperrealistic painting and drawing—artists today are finding new uses for trompe l’oeil. Andrew Holmquist’s spray paint evokes real creases and layers, Helene Appel’s sensitive rendering of rice grains borders abstraction, and Karl Haendel’s immaculately drawn books carry a sexual narrative and bring us to our last theme...

Text: There’s not much we can say that these artists haven’t already said in their works. Don’t let your “busy” life leave you feeling “fragile”. “Trust yourself” and strive for “independance”.

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Artsy Editorial