Center / Marginal Notes: Dan Devine / Eugenio Dittborn
is the first in a yearlong series of exhibitions for Western
Exhibitions' Plus Gallery curated by John Neff.
Each show in the program will present one work each by two artists
or a lone work by a single maker. All of the works exhibited
will deal – directly or indirectly – with the relationships
of centers to margins (culturally, geographically, politically
and within works themselves as a formal concern). The first
show will partner a 1987 concrete-and-steel sculpture by New
York State based Dan Devine with an Airmail Painting by the
Chilean artist Eugenio Dittborn.
Devine piece consists of a compact concrete block open on one
side to reveal the outline of an auto engine part enclosed within;
Dittborn’s work is an ultra-light collage painting sent
to the exhibition site from South America via airmail. The juxtaposition
of these works engenders a number of provocative contrasts between,
for example: contraction and expansion, heaviness and lightness,
stasis and movement. This list opens onto a number of subtler
oppositions and inversions, some of which are explored in curator
John Neff’s brief exhibition essay.
Devine’s most recent solo exhibition, “Inside
Out Nascar”, a follow-up to his widely discussed “Inside
Out Car” of 1998, was held at Brooklyn’s Pierogi
gallery in 2006. In 2003, a retrospective of Devine’s
work was mounted at Hofstra Museum in Hampstead, New York. The
artist’s work has been discussed and reviewed in Art in
America and the New York Times, among other publications. Devine
lives in Ghent, New York, where he recently presented the “living,
self-sustaining” installation Sheep Farm.
Dittborn has an extensive and illustrious exhibition
history. He work has been shown internationally since that the
1970s at venues as diverse as Documenta IX, the Centre Georges
Pompidou, P.S. 1 and the Whitechapel Art Gallery. Dittborn’s
Airmail Paintings are held in major museum collections worldwide.
The artist is represented by Alexander and Bonin gallery, New
York. Dittborn is based in Santiago, Chile.
Center / Marginal Notes series curator John Neff
lives and works in Chicago. His artwork is represented by Western
Exhibitions, where he will be presenting a solo exhibition in
May of 2008. Neff's past curatorial projects have included “Hysterical
Pastoral” at the Ukrainian Museum of Modern Art and “Cold
Conceptualism” at Suitable Gallery, both in Chicago. His
writings have recently been published in BAT Journal #5 and
in the exhibition catalog Vincent Como: In Praise of Darkness.