New Mexico Landscapes
Lane Meyer Projects is pleased to announce Ozone Love - New Mexico Landscapes, featuring artworks by David D'Agostino
October 6, 2017 - November 4, 2017
Opening Reception: October 6, 6pm - 8pm
Based on treks to the summits of desolate mountain peaks and desert lowlands in New Mexico, David D'Agostino's new painting series Ozone Love captures nature's ambivalent beauty and ever-present destruction.
Unlike many New Mexican painters, D'Agostino does not attempt to idealize the landscape with overly saturated colors and rarefied, unblemished horizons. He accepts the rupture: eerie, barren, stressed placed cut open by the velocity of weather and human inspired exploitation. His work cradles ominous terrains where excessive desert heat and mountain ice collapse out flimsy identities. Lifting our gaze toward form and emptiness, hovering between presence and absence - where blinking storms and dug out pits propel an irreversible slip of bone and muscle.
A simple walk in the wilderness both enthralls and terrorizes me. Suddenly, a storm blinds the eyes or crossing iced rivers propels an irreversible slip of bone and muscle. Nature is pain and loneliness. It’s over idealized, violent and always in motion—pivoting chaos and overwhelming detail which we rarely chose to grasp.
By toning down color I have accepted the rupture: eerie, barren, stressed, shadowed, otherworldly places. It is more about being captivated by collapse. A dusky place where ice and stone and swamp and gravity decapitate our flimsy identities. A place where you can die of thirst or fecundity. And meet your own wandering enlivened soul inside a beautiful womb devoid of human matter.
There are hefty doses of crushing physical side effects as well.
For 15 years, David D’Agostino pursued a nomadic path crossing North Africa and Southeastern Europe, including treks deep iin the Sahara. He returned to New Mexico two years ago and maintains a studio in Albuquerque, where he is committed to creating a dialog among Albuquerque artists and non-artists from disparate backgrounds who share (or perhaps don’t share) his same values and interests for ecologically engaged art and performance.
D’Agostino has a colorful exhibition career that includes being invited into the politically-inspired Bulgarian collective ‘XXL' and the first American to have a studio and representation with Townhouse Gallery in Cairo--a prominent contemporary art space in North Africa. He has maintained strong relations with the local art scenes in Sofia, Bucharest, and Cairo, and has organized local exhibits in the US, including ‘Bloodlines’ at the MCA Denver which featured a number of leading Bulgarian and Russian artists. In 2014, he was a founding member of the Ejection Seat Collective whose members performed ‘Broken Cowboy’ at Redline in Denver. In 2015, David and collaborating artist Noah Phillips, created a multimedia installation and performance ‘Parental Fatigue’ for the Biennale of the Americas hosted by Performance Art Now. In 2017, he will be constructing an inter-media installation at the Saad Zaghloul Contemporary Art Center in Cairo.
His work is primarily influenced by ecological crisis as it relates to habitat loss and drought, and the subsequent impact on species extinction and human migration. Technically, his painting manifests the artistic philosophy of the Qing Dynasty painter Shi-Tao, who emphasized subjective perspective and the use of shifting negative space. D’Agostino’s installations are built using basic carpentry skills similar to 19th century American village manufacturing. The installations embrace the early childhood educational ideals of Friedrich Froebel, the 19th c. German philosopher who invented ‘kindergarten’--but with an adult twist.
David maintains a parallel creative path between painting (which he sells commercially) and installations (which he most often exhibits in public venues and museums). For community outreach, David teaches and volunteers through Catholic Charities mentoring local refugee youth from Afghanistan and Iraq. He is an officer of the Albuquerque Zen Center.
D'Agostino works with a variety of intermedia, including installation, video, performance, painting, and photography. Often applying the principles of Fluxus, he explores the liminal space that exists between the creation of one object or idea and its subsequent re-imagining. He has exhibited at the Akhnaton Gallery (Cairo, Egypt), Atlanta Contemporary Art Center (Atlanta), XXL Gallery (Sofia, Bulgaria), Townhouse Gallery (Cairo), MCAD/Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, City Gallery (Bucharest, Romania), Center de Design l'UQAM (Montreal), Redline (Denver), Skopje Cultural Center (Skopje, Macadonia), Krause Gallery (Atlanta); Art Aqua (Miami), Black Sea Archeological Museum (Varna), Hause E (Ludwigshafen, Germany), MOXY (New Orleans), Galeria Debla (Granada, Spain), Greg Moon Gallery (Taos, New Mexico), Poem 88 Gallery (Atlanta), and EDGE Gallery (Denver), among others.