Lehmann Maupin would like to announce an exhibition of new work by artist Jennifer Steinkamp. This will be Steinkamp's first exhibition at Lehmann Maupin.
Jennifer Steinkamp, a Los Angeles-based artist, employs computer animation and new media to create projection installations in order to explore ideas about architectural space, motion, and phenomenological perception. Her digitally animated works make use of the interplay between actual space and illusionistic space, thus creating environments in which the roles of the viewing subjects and the art objects become blurred. She has said: "As my ideas and the work developed, I found I could dematerialize architecture by combining light, space and movement."
"Dervish," Steinkamp's installation at Lehmann Maupin, will consist of four high definition video projections of individual trees with branches moving in a twirling pattern. Dervish was inspired by a ritual practiced by the priests, or dervishes, of the Mevlavi sect of Islam. In the midst of a trance, the dervishes whirl in a motion symbolizing the soul's release from earthly ties and communication with the divine. The trees reflect this ritualistic movement through the rhythmic and stylized swaying and swiveling of the branches. The movement of the branches contains elements of both control and lawlessness -- while the whirling motion of the trees is fanciful and seemingly enchanted, the movement is limited by the roots of the trees. This pattern of movement echoes both the celebratory and ceremonial aspects of moving prayer. Projected to fill the height of the gallery's walls, the images interact with the architecture of the gallery, creating tension between the imaginary landscape and the physical space.
Jennifer Steinkamp studied at CalArts and ArtCenter in Los Angeles, and has had solo exhibitions at The Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (1995), and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, Washington (1999), among others. Her group shows include the 8th Annual Istanbul Biennial (2003) and participation in shows at the San Jose Museum of Art (2002) and the Seoul Museum of Art (2002). In 2004, she will be collaborating with director Bill Friedken, creating sets for the opera Tannhäuser at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles and Lincoln Center, New York. Her work will also be included in the upcoming show Visual Music at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C. and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, in 2005.