Katzman Art Projects is proud to present its inaugural exhibition from multidisciplinary artist Eleanor King. This exhibition marks the transition of the gallery from Studio 21 Fine Art to Katzman Art Projects. New Director Marianne Katzman is delighted and honoured to be in Halifax showcasing Canadian talent.
Eleanor King’s new body of work “HIVEMIND” will be seen for the first time in her hometown since residing in NYC / Lenapehoking for the last decade. Known for her project-based site installations, HIVEMIND showcases a bold new material strategy of painting for King. Bound to her studio by necessity through the pandemic, King transformed her work from a participatory and site-responsive one, to that of an exploratory individual in the studio by developing a vocabulary in oil, acrylic, flashe, watercolour and ink; combining handmade hard-edges with drippy chance.
King’s systematic approach to composition is set up by a rules-based framework: using consistently ready-made canvases, designing with calculator ratios and drawing with a measuring device, ruler and pencil. These process paintings are defiantly analogue with only modern techniques employed; there is no digital intervention and little masking. They conceal their text messages encoded in dazzling camouflage, words criss-crossing across the picture plane in hot florescent reds and melting blues.
These signs contain slogans that can’t easily be read. SINGLE USE PLASTIC and NOTHING NOT (FOR SALE) reflect the political and climactic moment, with phrases that push and pull to the left and right. They are spelled out in urgency. For the artist, though the act of painting brings great joy and calm in a turbulent world, it also feels futile to do; why make art when so much else needs to be done? “I WAS GONNA (fight fascism)” extends the painting over multiple canvases and spills out onto the floor, the phrase a lyric from a song. HIVEMIND pieces think about what it means to be in a democracy - at its best, collective action toward progressive change, and at worst mob rule to our basest instincts.
King’s painting practice evolved planning larger site-specific murals and installations, her canvas works are often a result of thinking though other ideas as sketches, which later transform through studio time to new works in their own right.