Resolution / hpgrp Gallery
Jan 5 – Jan 28, 2012
Opening Reception: Jan 5, 2012, 6-8PM
hpgrp GALLERY NEW YORK
529 West 20th St. New York, NY10011
Tel: 212 727 2491
Opening Hours: Tue-Sat 11am – 6pm
hpgrp GALLERY NEW YORK is proud to announce an exhibition of selected works by Katsuhiro Saiki, a Japanese artist currently based in New York. The exhibition, which will include both older works and never-before-seen works, will focus on Saiki’s signature image-based structures, which bridge the gap between photography and sculpture. Using his own digital and analog photographs, which he snapped on the streets of Tokyo, Berlin, and New York, Saiki challenges the notion that photographs are merely representations of objects. Instead, he lifts them from the flat surface of the wall, and applies them to three-dimensional plywood structures, proving that in certain states, photographs can become objects themselves.
At first glance, Saiki’s work looks very much like minimalist works by artists such as Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt and Carl Andre. For his “Frames” series, he created geometric forms made out of steel, and placed them on a white background. Using lighting that made the structures appear to cast no shadows, he took photographs of the structures juxtaposed against each other. The resulting images are uncannily similar to LeWitt’s two-dimensional drawings of cubic grids, although very much marked with Saiki’s own concepts. “You see them as shapes on paper, but actually the structures are real objects,” Saiki explained. “For me, the difference is important.”
In other works, Saiki flips his explorations with photographs of cubic structures by creating modular three-dimensional works composed of images. In “Place #3,” Saiki uses an image he took in Berlin—where he lived for three months—and places it on a three-dimensional tile on the gallery floor. Reminiscent of the intimate tile patterns of Carl Andre, the incredibly arresting image of a single plane floating across a color-infused sky at sunset, placed on the slightly raised platform, looks like a window into another world. In his “Arrangements” series, Saiki used pictures that at first seem to be color blocks, but on closer examination reveal themselves to be photographs of power lines set against deep blue skies, or serrated aluminum fences. Set in repetitive patterns on a platform that extends from the wall, the works recall the plywood and plexiglass works of Donald Judd.
Ultimately, the works in the exhibition are photographs existing in real space and real time. They defy mere representation of an event that has already passed, and redefine the mediums of both sculpture and photography.
The works in the exhibition at hpgrp GALLERY NEW YORK are pre-cursors to the conceptual pieces that Saiki is currently working on, in which he takes images of architectural masterpieces such as the Seagram Building by Mies van der Rohe, and collages them on paper. By taking an image of an architectural structure made in the past, and collaging them on a new structure of his own conception, he is re-imagining the way that we conceive space, as well as furthering his investigations with photography and sculpture. “By instinct, the new works don’t look like the buildings.”