Nogah Engler Solo Exhibition
Galerie Huit is delighted to present the Hong Kong solo debut exhibition ’Time lapses’ by London based artist, Nogah Engler.
Exhibition Period: 19 January – 5 March 2017
Reception: 19 January 2017, 6 – 9 pm
Engler (b.1970, Pennsylvania, US) depicts cryptic landscapes that point towards the idyll. Blushing fields and hollowed out forests seemingly emerge and recede simultaneously on the surface, evoking an evaporating mist. In real time, each painting reveals a complex layering system and concentrated areas of intricate detail within that both pays homage to, and creates a dialogue with historic classical paintings in the canon of Western Art.
‘Time lapses’ explores a non-linear interpretation of time, where the artist treats each painting as an archeological site, creating fluctuating moments between the past and present.
As a starting point, Engler draws from personal memories of a particular place that is deeply embedded in the collective psyche of her father’s family, one that has witnessed historic events and imprinted its legacy on three generations of the Engler family. Assimilating the information is where the artist’s practice begins – at the point no longer belonging in her personal domain, a different narrative emerges; it speaks of symmetry and balanced composition, a tangible way to sort through the psychological detritus. The Italian Masters of the Late Renaissance recognised the fundamental importance of the three-dimensional spatial plane and perspective when creating the perfect scene and whilst Engler acknowledges the legacy of this tradition, she propositions how a landscape can be defined in contemporary painting. Building the surface gradually, through a timely process of addition and removal, allows the artist to create segments, and as counterpoint to the representational work of the Fifteenth Century Greats, a landscape that never fully forms.
Disrupting the process of creating an idyll, Engler consciously appropriates and inserts familiar classical iconography into her landscapes, so much so, that the paintings can be interpreted as a collage, distinctly sorted influences and memories. The painting ‘After Nature’ reads as a mural that might depict an ancient battle scene – one of soldiers and weapons juxtaposed with popular Greek marble friezes against a dark horizon that recalls German Romantic painters. Rich in metaphor, the painting points towards humankind’s destructive nature, yet the blue shards representing the skies perhaps indicate a future.
’Altitude’ breathes light into the room where the vertiginous heights of the mountainous landscape are teased into the foreground of the painting, jarring with details of potent red flora and fauna thus challenging the traditional perspectival gaze. Foliage and fodder are recurrent in Engler’s works – and as much as Engler disrupts conventional beauty in her landscape painting, in the Evergreen painting, she acknowledges it by paying tribute to the Romantics, depicting an overspill of rich red fruit underneath a dreamy blue sky. Magnified detail of a larger painting, the small painting counterbalances the former and celebrates the smaller things.
Throughout the exhibition, the archeological pretext becomes the ecological. At this point, the artist wishes to remind us of ‘who we are’ and to distill the moment of realisation before it evaporates.
‘Time Lapses’ opens on the 19th January 2017 and runs through to 5th March 2017.
For further information please contact:
Carmen Ng on 852 2803 2089 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Nogah Engler
Nogah Engler lives and works in London.
Recent exhibitions: 2015 The Epoch of Space, Changing Perspectives, Haifa Museum, Haifa, Israel, This just in: New Acquisitions, The Pizzutti Collection, Columbus, Ohio, USA, Drawing Biennial, The Drawing Room, London