«Any store in a modern town, with its elegant windows all displaying useful and pleasing objects, is much more aesthetically enjoyable than all those passéist exhibitions which have been so lauded everywhere. An electric iron, its white steel gleaming clean as a whistle, delights the eye more than a nude statuette... A typewriter is more architectural than all those building projects which win prizes... The windows of a perfumer’s shop, with little boxes and packets, bottles and future-color triplicate phials, reflected in the extremely elegant mirrors... Furs, traveling bags, china—these things are all a much more rewarding sight than the grimy little pictures nailed on the gray wall of the passéist painter’s studio.»
- Giacomo Balla, The Futurist Universe
PROYECTOSMONCLOVA is pleased to announce its first exhibition with artist Josephine Meckseper on September 22, 2017. This will be her first solo show in Mexico. Meckseper’s practice is premised in a consideration of the visual and material cultures of consumerism, art history, counter-culture, and early 20th century modes of display through carefully orchestrated installations, assemblages, and photographs. For two decades, Meckseper has created lavish ecosystems wherein objects lose and gain meaning, status, and purpose within a network of constantly changing contexts. While visually confrontational, Meckseper’s labyrinthine combinations avoid an explicit position. Like the Situationist International theory of détournement, Meckseper builds upon various art historical concepts such as Duchamp’s readymade and destabilizes their neutrality. Objects combined in Meckseper’s vitrines such as men’s underwear, toilet plungers, women’s lingerie, etc., are never stable in meaning or intent, but subject to time, place, and economy. Their values and hidden agendas are both revealed and undermined.
In addition to Meckseper’s vitrines, the paintings on view borrow formal elements from modernist masters such as the idea of line from Mondrian, and pure forms from De Stijl and the Russian Constructivists. However, Meckseper subverts the unique in her usage of everyday materials such as denim as a painting surface, which can be seen as a type of readymade but also an object of mass consumerism that is devoid of what Walter Benjamin called the “aura” of painting.
A new mirrored Plexiglass floor installation is going to create a total environment in the second gallery space, accompanied by a projected film work that will reflect onto the floor.
Josephine Meckseper was born in Lilienthal, Germany; she currently lives and works in New York City. Institutional exhibitions include Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany (2007); Gesellschaft für Aktuelle Kunst (GAK), Bremen, Germany (2008); New Photography 2008: Josephine Meckseper and Mikhail Subotzky, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA (2008); Josephine Meckseper: Recent Films, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana, USA (2009); Blaffer Gallery, The Art Museum of the University of Houston, Houston, USA (2009); american apparel, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK (2009); Migros Museum Für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich, Switzerland (2009); Parrish Art Museum, New York, USA (2013); and 2X (I) ST, Neuer Aachener Kunstverein, Aachen, Germany (2014). In 2012, Manhattan Oil Project, Meckseper's first public project in New York, was commissioned by Art Production Fund and installed adjacent to Times Square. She participated in the Whitney Biennial, New York, USA (2006, 2010); 2nd International Biennial of Contemporary Art of Seville, Seville, Spain (2006); Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, Moscow, Russia (2007); Sharjah Biennial, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (2011); and the Taipei Biennial, Taipei, Taiwan (2014).
Meckseper’s work is in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, New York, USA; FRAC Nord-Pas-de-Calais, Dunkerque, France; Kunsthalle Bremen, Bremen, Germany; Kunstmuseum Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA; Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich, Switzerland; Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA; Museum on the Seam, Jerusalem, Israel; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA.