Lehmann Maupin is honored to open its Autumn season in Hong Kong with the first solo show in China of acclaimed American artist Teresita Fernández, whose conceptual, experiential works are often characterized by an interest in perception and the psychology of looking. The exhibition will be on view from 13 September to 9 November 2013 at 407 Pedder Building, 12 Pedder Street, Central, Hong Kong.
Inspired by the landscape and natural phenomena as well as diverse historical and cultural references, Fernández presents a range of new works that collectively demonstrate her remarkable ability to transform a multitude of materials and the surrounding architecture into unique perceptual experiences.
David Maupin, Founding Partner of Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong, said “Teresita’s works are highly engaging, very architectural and often dominate the viewer with their physical presence. We are proud to present her debut solo show in China, also our first exhibition by home-grown US artist in the Hong Kong gallery space.”
New drawings made with India ink on reflective chromed metal from the series Golden, which includes a large-scale triptych measuring more than three and a half meters, continue Fernández’s inquiries into materiality and mining, traditional landscape painting and the cultural significance of gold. The transparent ink marks and the mirror-like golden surface of the drawings play with the painterly convention of figure-in-the-landscape by superimposing the viewer's distorted reflection into the image. The scenes become like gestural film stills or cinematic panoramas. Golden relates closely to a sculptural installation the artist recently completed in Shanghai, titled Yellow Mountains. Made entirely of gold chains and pyrite ("Fool's Gold"), Yellow Mountains is an inverted topographical sculpture that refers to Huangshan, the mountain range that has inspired countless poems and paintings throughout Chinese history.
Across from the Golden series the surrounding white walls of the gallery become grounds for Epic. A swarm of thousands of small pieces of natural graphite cover the walls. The lustrous, gem-like material cast what appear to be shadows that are actually soft graphite marks drawn directly onto the surface. Object and process morph to become the act of drawing and the finished mark. The dynamic composition recalls sweeping atmospheric clouds, grand natural landscapes or epic meteoritic phenomena.
In the adjacent room Fernández exhibits works from her Nocturnal series. At once landscape painting, conventional drawing and sculptural relief; from afar these graphite panels suggest dark, monochrome minimalist paintings. As viewers approach, the works slowly reveal detailed lustrous romantic landscapes. Like a drawing over a drawing, the graphite--carved, polished, layered and drawn on--reflects light to depict luminous night scenes oddly familiar and at the same time mysteriously displaced.
On Friday, 2 August, the Aspen Art Museum, Colorado, honored Fernández with their annual Aspen Art Award for Art in recognition of her outstanding contributions to the visual arts. Next year, in May 2014, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA), North Adams, will present a major solo exhibition with the artist that will remain on view until April 2015.
Teresita Fernández (b. 1968, Miami, Florida) received her MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University and her BFA from Florida International University. She was awarded the prestigious MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2005, and was appointed by President Obama to serve on the US Commission of Fine Arts in 2011. Additional awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Louis Comfort Tiffany Biennial Award, an American Academy in Rome Affiliated Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts Artist’s Grant, among others.
Fernández’s large-scale commissions include the newly inaugurated headquarters for the United States Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security, in Washington, D.C. and a site-specific installation titled Blind Blue Landscape at the renowned Bennesee Art site in Naoshima, Japan. She is the youngest artist commissioned by the Seattle Art Museum for the recently opened Olympic Sculpture Park, where her permanently installed work Seattle Cloud Cover allows visitors to walk under a covered skyway while viewing the city’s skyline through optically shifting multicolored glass.
The artist’s work is included in many of the world’s most prominent public collections and has been the subject of important exhibitions around the world, including at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California; The Modern Art Museum of Ft. Worth, Texas; Castello di Rivoli, Turin, Italy; The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, Malaga, Spain; and Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, among others. Fernández is a board member of Artpace, a non-profit, international artist’s residency program.
Teresita Fernández has lived and worked in Brooklyn, New York, for the past 15 years.