Curtis Mann, Everything After: Kavi Gupta | 835 W. Washington Blvd. Chicago, IL, 60607
In Mann's most recent works, found photographs of conflicted and historically complex places throughout the Middle East are subjected to a process of selection and erasure. By painting on portions of enlarged color photographs with a clear varnish and then bleaching away unprotected portions of the image, new and abstract meanings are sought from appropriated snapshots, travel photographs, and casual documentations. The photograph is physically and contextually altered; as a result, the work oscillates between image and object, photography and painting, real and imagined.
In a recent interview Mann states, "I am constantly trying to force these found images to function outside of their initial utility and use photography's inherent, malleable nature as a way of coming to an ulterior understanding of the complex and the unfamiliar. Coming from a mechanical engineering background, I have always been curious about the paper, the chemicals and the inks used to produce photographic images. They are the birth of the image and their manipulation holds a lot of potential for disrupting the powers of the flat, conventional image."
For his exhibition at the Kavi Gupta CHICAGO, Mann will present a selection of new works, including large chemically altered mural grids, panoramic landscapes and haunting distorted figures.
Mann was born in 1979 in Dayton, Ohio, he lives and works in Chicago, Illinois. Recent exhibitions include the Whitney Biennial 2010, curated by Francesco Bonami, something after, Galerie Almine Rech, Brussels, Altered Sates, Jewish Museum of Contemporary Art Kansas City, MO and New Artists/New Work, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.
Curtis Mannred field, 2010Bleached chromogenic development prints87 1/2 x 126 in
222.3 x 320 cm framedunique
Curtis Mannphotographer (scratch), 2009Synthetic polymer varnish on bleached chromogenic development print23 1/2 x 19 1/2 in
59.7 x 49.5 cmunique
Curtis Mannnew hole (sky), 2010Chemically altered chromogenic development print26 x 40 in
66 x 101.6 cmunique