Almine Rech is happy to current the primary New York solo exhibition of Bay Space artist Zio Ziegler. Titled The Important Figures, the exhibition options 12 work just lately accomplished in his Marin County studio.
Ziegler was educated at RISD and Brown and works out of a well-worn ranch home within the woods the place he’s in a state of incessant creation, coaxing life out of quite a few canvases at any given time. The compositions cohere round totemic figures that harken again to the early Nineteen Forties work of Jackson Pollock, caught up in dynamic whorls of gesture and shade. Pollock is an apt touchstone, portray earlier than the atom bomb modified our outlook on the long run and our relationship to the planet. Different historic figures making artwork on the cusp of worldwide calamity reminiscent of Umberto Boccioni, Jacob Epstein, and Francis Bacon additionally hang-out the ambiance round these works. Ziegler sees our present second as a equally epochal inflection level with the speedy adoption of A.I., introducing an existential disaster for creatives in addition to on a regular basis residents.
These totems, which Ziegler has referred to as “Important Figures,” are in his phrases, “a rejection of pace and alter…relics that provoke the nervous system, somewhat than the mind.” In entrance of them, one feels a haptic, bodily vitality which inspires a chronic engagement and an appreciation of their compositional complexity. It’s not possible to think about a pc producing and even replicating the extremely subjective gestures, passages, and incidents that make up these work, traits that Ziegler deliberately engineers into the work as a direct problem to machine studying. In opposition to the backdrop of the technological change that’s a lot on his thoughts, the work rejoice particular person, quixotic company whereas concurrently recording it in manually-applied oil and acrylic. The hand of the artist is emphatically ever-present. As he sees it, ”artwork and its surrounding theories stays devoted to wanting on the variety of human perspective somewhat than the dominant pressure silently at play,” specifically A.I. studying and its race in direction of homogenizing consensus.
As evidenced by this electrical physique of labor, Ziegler has discovered a brand new crucial for portray, that subsequent jolt of urgency that has at all times emerged at instances of disaster to propel the custom alongside from technology to technology. As at all times, artists like Ziegler are there to shake us out of complacency and name out laborious truths. It’s refreshing to see the time-honored apply of portray so deliberately yoked to such urgent and well timed points, and in Zio Ziegler a brand new torch-bearer has arrived on the scene. —Michael Darling