John McWhinnie at Glenn Horowitz Bookseller is very pleased to announce a forthcoming show, Holton Rower: Scraps. The show will open December 10th with a reception for the artist from 6 to 8 pm and will run through January 22, 2011. In conjunction with the exhibition, a catalogue will be published in an edition of 300 copies.
Rower’s latest body of work – hybrid painting/reliefs that are created by stacking and gluing plywood scraps into tower like forms and pouring acrylic paints over them– are steeped in art history. The grammar of their language forms a veritable artistic Esperanto. Plywood scraps taken from the studio floor speak both to minimalist sculpture and painting as well as to art povera: The process of building the surface up with glue recalls post minimalist use of organic materials but it also speaks to a tradition of unorthodox support for painting, one that follows the trajectory of Duchamp’s large glass and joins Rauschenberg’s combines, Polke’s t-shirts and tablecloths to Dieter Roth’s dirt paintings. And Rower’s method of creating these beings by dripping and pouring multicolored acrylic paint is also ripe with allusion. There have been notorious pourers and drippers, beginning most famously with Jackson Pollock but including Linda Benglis and Roxy Paine, who have exploited both the viscous potential of their medium, acrylic and latex, as well as gravity and gesture. Rower’s work follows in this path. But unlike their efforts, he takes a detour into a world of optical ravishment and trickery.
“Holton’s new work is many-hued, differing from his many-folded green-back Annuit Coeptis (Novus Ordo Seclorum) chains and fitted pipes and series of brass Chinese locks. He has mined ply-wood and freed rainbow riots of color to dazzle us and to pose the question of the legitimacy of Mister Master Mondrian’s primary babies. Boogie-Woogie penmen, indeed!” -Sean Sweeney