Safe Gallery (New York) presents until next April 23 a double exposure. The work of Ioanna Pantazopoulou and the new paintings by Brian Chippendale. A large shipment of swimsuits has dropped in the lap of Greek artist Ioanna Pantazopoulou, facilitating the creation of her latest ephemeral monument. Pantazopoulou has a knack of masterfully mining the detritus of our everyday consumer culture and transforming it into epic sensation. For this exhibition the artist has created a temporary residence in the gallery by altering the space with a large-scale hut. Ioanna’s sculptures are created on site, therefore the space becomes a vital component to the development of the work. The outcome, simultaneously rough, fragile, and ambiguous, provides a trace of her activity.
The viewer will be presented with a hypnotic web of interlocking bikinis used as a curtain wall for the structure. The roof of the dwelling is composed of an excess of tinsel streamers. Pantazopoulou became fascinated with the material after visiting a variety of used car dealerships.
The overabundance of bikinis and streamers subvert their original leisurely intentions, and in this new incarnation are used to build an eerie setting. According to the artist the experience of disorder and unexpected combinations is manifested throughout by the re-inventing of rules. In addition to the large scale work there will be a variety of smaller works sculpted from discarded rope climbing gear, hundreds of smuggled Cuban cigar labels, and cast aside piano keys.
Brian Chippendale’s airy new paintings unveil a secret inner world assembled from raw drawing, scrawled notes, and compulsive doodles. By shedding the density of his past work, Chippendale trades out his heavily-populated collages for visually lighter canvases. The artist’s characteristic rainbow-hued palette remains at play as he edits out the layered space with white to carve out a new arena for expression. In some moments Chippendale actually makes punctured shapes through his surfaces as an alternate layer of mark-making. The laminated surfaces serve as the backbone of the paintings while bursts of marks hover in space. The drippy color-drenched squiggles, sprayed like fragments of graffiti, serve as futuristic hieroglyphics with buoyant and vibrant results.