October 28 - December 3, 2011
Corbett vs. Dempsey is very pleased to present its second exhibition of work by Albert Oehlen. One of the great contemporary artists, Oehlen has been dubbed by Peter Schjeldahl “the most resourceful abstract painter alive.” He is known for his daringly adventurous, highly inventive, and sometimes wickedly funny paintings, which often feature elements of collage mixed with linear free painting, sometimes applied directly with his fingers. A master of semiotic prestidigitation, Oehlen’s work challenges notions of elegance and balance, meanwhile asking irreverent questions about the concept of beauty and the durability of taste. Since turning to abstraction in the late 1980s, Oehlen has developed a highly personal body of work that connects with the grand tradition of abstract expressionism, dovetailing especially with Willem de Kooning, but adding a thoroughly contemporary sensibility and subversive sense of humor. In Painthing on the Möve , Oehlen will present a group of ten small drawing collages and two large paintings, all part of his “Conduction” series, which takes its name from the structured improvisations of musician and composer Lawrence “Butch” Morris. Utilizing a graphic black and white palette, the works in this show continue in the spirit of Oehlen’s earlier “computer paintings,” which used pixelated motifs derived from computer drawing tools. The dazzling linear paintings in the “Conduction” series replace those jagged computer lines with graphics borrowed from Oehlen’s small drawing collages, blown up to a larger scale and painted and drawn into with spray paint and charcoal.
A 108-page hardbound catalog for Painthing on the Möve will include images from the sister exhibition at Thomas Dane Gallery, London, and another show, Chicago Imagists 1966-1973 , that Corbett and Dempsey curated together with Oehlen, also at Dane.