SEPTEMBER 12, 2009 – OCTOBER 31, 2009
Alejandra von Hartz Gallery is pleased to announce The Sources of the Nile, Manuel Ameztoy (Argentina, 1973) ’s first solo exhibition in the United States.
For this exhibition, Ameztoy will display a wide range of pieces that fully represents his diverse work and its most recent evolution: paper cutouts in Plexiglas boxes, paintings, textile cutouts, and photographs of land-art interventions.
Ameztoy’s most recognizable work are the handmade-cutouts contained in Plexiglas boxes, and have been previously shown in the United States on various occasions. The pieces for the current exhibition make up a series of highly elaborate pieces of painted cutout curtains of mirrored mylar, reminiscent of the handcraft techniques of Mexican “papel picado” and Japanese “kirigami”. As in a fantastical scene, the vegetable pattern cutouts of acetate mirror unveil the depths of a pristine forest where Hokusai’s explorers share a vision of The Sources of the Nile.
These same intricate cutouts are multiplied and serve as stencyls that give birth to a series of paintings. On the canvas, the image works as a motif, a cliché that modifies itself thanks to
repetition. Ameztoy appeals to our imagination. As stated in a recent interview, “I create the paintings and the boxes overlapping many layers of images. I intend to produce visual instability; pieces that show an image partly-produced and partly-invented by the imagination of the observer, the “beholder”… I like it when the memory of what was seen remains unstable, like in dreams.”
The “Pop-up Paradises” are large scale textile cutouts that have been alternatively shown in art galleries and fairs, as well as on-stage installations for theatre and performances. More recently they have been used as land-art interventions registered on photographs and video. These aerial sculptures stand for a parallel, artificial nature of extendable objects whose many layers of repetitive pattern fade in and out, creating an effect through artifice that recalls the organic development of the vegetable kingdom.
When photographed as land-art interventions, these pieces no longer represent extended landscapes, but rather become artificial organisms implanted on natural grounds and exposed to the elements of the virgin wilds.