DANIEL DU BERN
Impossible Objects is a dual exhibition programme organised in conversation by Melissa Loughnan and Helen Hughes, taking place between June and August at Utopian Slumps. Continuing on from Discreet Objects, which explored absorptive, post-minimalist formalisms based on Brian Eno’s notion of ‘discreet music’, Impossible Objects extends this spatial investigation by considering gestalt relationships between figure and ground, based on the optical illusion of ‘impossible’ or ‘undecidable objects’. As with the previous exhibition, Impossible Objects pivots around a formal code: the works included display, in part, a refusal of a two or three-dimensional status and share an impossible contingence with their environments.
In Impossible Objects II, opening on 21 July, ideas of environmental absorption and interruption are investigated through the work of artists Daniel du Bern, Starlie Geikie, Matt Hinkley, Renee Jaeger and Ash Kilmartin. Hinkley’s recent object-based works have utilised indentations that move between concave and convex, focusing on the counterplay between mass and space via the trope of obsessive patterning. Du Bern’s glass and aluminum white-out painting explores the imagery of painted-out windows in disused shops across Europe, similarly transforming the non-space of a transparent window into an art object by making it opaque and removing it from its traditional urban context. Jaeger’s tessellated works on paper similarly play with figure and ground by rendering depth via traditional methods like dot-point or tonal shading, yet simultaneously create complex, interconnected patterns that belie the search for a focal point. Geikie’s stark wall piece, doubling as a wearable piece signified by the hole through the centre, equally uses the negative space surrounding the incised leather work to give it form and meaning, while Kilmartin’s structural installations deliberately evoke transitory associations between permanence and the nature of cycles.