Exhibition: ‘Das New Yorker Atelier, Abridged’, Serpentine Galleries
American artist Wade Guyton (b. 1972) instead of a paintbrush uses digital technologies – iPhones, cameras, computers and Epson printers – as tools to create a body of work that translates digital information into physical paintings and compositions on paper. His latest exhibition, Das New Yorker Atelier, Abridged, is currently on display at Serpentine Galleries in London and our editors had the pleasure to attend a private tour with curator Rebecca Lewin last October.
Lewin told them that in early 2002 Guyton started to experiment with the scope of what a printer can do so he was working with a desktop inkjet printer and asking it to print on to a piece of paper to create patterns or repetitions. Then he started moving from paper to canvas, and in 2015 he put a sort of moratoria for himself for exhibiting in institutions. What happened to his practice if he wasn’t thinking about the end space? Finding the right answer to this question was the conceptual frame behind the exhibition Das New Yorker Atelier, Abridged*, Rebecca Lewin told them.
The work presented in this exhibition has been produced between 2015 and 2016 and can be viewed as a single body of work. The first installation was at Museum Brandhorst in Munich, so the Germanic title is a reference to that exhibition. For more than a decade Wade Guyton has been exploring the impact of digital technologies on artistic processes blurring the boundaries between the digital and the physical worlds.
Guyton utilises iPhone, computer, inkjet printers and canvases that are too thick for the printers and have been treated to become resistant to ink absorption. So the printer can generate distortions and disruptions of the image, drops of ink, glitches and smears that have a dramatic effect on the work. On the other hand, the physical world is represented by physical parameters such as the level of humidity in his New York’s studio or the views he was able to access dictates the composition of the painting.
Text by CLOT Magazine (Twitter @clotmagazine)