Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects is pleased to announce "This and Everything Else," an exhibition of new metal paintings by Brooklyn-based artist Hugo McCloud.
McCloud is driven by the desire to re-contextualize and re-frame the perception of common objects and materials. He has made paintings with materials ranging from woven plastic waste sacks sourced on his travels through India, Africa and Southeast Asia, where they are most commonly used by ragpickers to transport their finds through the city, to liquid tar and roofing paper marked with elaborate floral patterns using his own hand-carved wooden stamps.
"This and Everything Else" includes bronze paintings in three distinct groups. The first focus on revelation. In these works the properties and vulnerabilities of the metal sheet and the various processes the artist enacts on it are exposed; scratches and stains from the soldering process, fingerprints, and other remnants of touch are visible. The second group is chemically treated to create an atmospheric and suggestive palette that ranges from smoky whites to pale blues with green and gray patination. The diffuse space created by the use of color transforms the rough horizontal solder seams into dramatic horizon lines. In the final group of paintings the metal has been treated so that it turns a deep black, voiding the entire surface of the bronze and any marks left by previous actions, fully disguising the material while highlighting the rippling solder, marking a vertical seam in the surface of the painting.
In all of the paintings, the solder lines are jagged and crackling, purposefully exaggerated to create texture and disruption on the smooth metal sheets. Regardless of patina, engraving, or suggestions of painterly gesture, these exaggerated joining lines across the surface of the bronze create a link between the works in the gallery and the outside world where this material is commonly used in plumbing, electronics, and other functional objects. This link is an intentional one, connecting the world of contemplation and desire where art resides to the practical world of labor where art, and so much else, is tangibly, painstakingly made.
Hugo McCloud (b. 1980, Palo Alto, CA) is a self-taught artist with a background in Industrial Design. McCloud has had solo exhibitions at The Arts Club, London; Fondazione 107 and Luce Gallery in Turin, Italy; and Sean Kelly Gallery, New York.