artists & participants
Simon Lee Gallery is pleased to present An Uncanny Likeness, a group exhibition organized by Franklin Melendez and Romain Dauriac in the newly re-launched New York space.
The show revisits the legacy of portrait painting bringing together a diverse group of artists whose practice revolves around the re-drawing of the figure. Eschewing the ‘faithful reproduction’ as convention, these artists pursue emotive distortion and stylistic idiosyncrasies that foreground painting’s relationship to the body. The resulting tableaux are thick with symbolic meaning, conjuring altered states and arcane visions that are as indebted to the virtuosic flourishes of Mannerist painters as the elastic possibilities of present day visualizing techniques.
In particular, the show teases out a historical link between a group of artists in the late 1980s and early 1990s - including Martin Wong and Katharina Wulff - whose concern with self-imagining and self-rendering takes on political import. This sheds light on a younger generation tackling similar questions of art historical lineage, queer pictorial space, viewer power relations and corporeal abstraction through a visual dialogue that is both playful and poignant.