Seizan Gallery New York
September 7 – October 21, 2023
OPENING RECEPTION: September 7, 6-8 pm
SEIZAN Gallery New York is pleased to announce Pretty Shiny Stuff, a solo exhibition of works by German artist Astrid Köppe from September 7th through October 21st, 2023. The opening reception with the artist is Thursday, September 7th, 6-8pm. Located in one of the gallery’s newly renovated exhibition spaces, the show features 30 pieces from the artist’s vast oeuvre of A4 size drawings. Four large format enamel-coated steel panel works are also on view. This is the artist's first solo exhibition in New York.
Astrid Köppe has worked with dedication to a single format of drawing for over twenty years. The focus is on biomorphic shapes meticulously rendered at the center of vertical white paper. Her use of mechanical pencils and watercolor reference illustrations from pre-photography era botanical and medical textbooks. Industrial design and classic science fiction illustration are also suggested. Just as the strange shapes begin to make sense, they slip away, refusing easy categorization. The artist consciously weaves riddles into each work.
Köppe starts a drawing with a precise visualization in mind. Each object (shape or pattern) is rendered “accurately” and convincingly. Yet, viewers cannot figure out exactly what they are looking at. Köppe plays with what she calls “pretend 3-D effect,” giving shades to objects only to confuse perspective. Iridescent watercolors add extra layers of complexity.
The exhibition also includes four works made by vitreous enameling on steel plates, a technique traditionally used for industrial signage. In these pieces Köppe explores scaling up from the drawings. Working with a fabricator, the artist applies vitreous enamel onto steel plate by spraying through stencils, dripping onto the plate, scratching around wet enamel. The glossy kiln-fired works are related to the drawings yet present a dramatic contrast.
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Gallery New York
525 W26th St. Ground Floor
New York, NY 10001
Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11am-6pm