Victoria Roth: Spleen. April 12 – May 26, 2019. Opening reception Friday April 12th, 6-8 pm
Brennan & Griffin is pleased to present Spleen, an exhibition of new paintings by Victoria Roth. Alluding to the bodily nature of Roth’s paintings, the title invokes the role of the spleen as a pulsating organ that filters and cleanses the body’s blood. Doubling as a literary reference to Baudelaire’s “Spleen and Ideal” (as part of The Flowers of Evil) and his later work Paris Spleen, this organ in his work is used as a metaphor for the “ache of living”. Roth subverts the fin-de-siècle trope, using spleen as a vivid and grotesque image to underline the aliveness of her paintings.
Roth’s approach to painting is a digestive process that generates physical and emotional environments. Muscular and bulbous shapes populate interior and industrial landscapes. Organic forms in flux – they appear to twist and pierce, fall yet hold, rise and change – operate within carefully composed structures that suspend the action in a state of energetic tension before collapsing into a cycle of metamorphosis. Oil is rubbed and wiped, surfaces are sanded and polished with a resolute touch. This removed materiality coexists alongside meatier passages, propelling the marks into sinuous coordination. Roth’s dance background can be seen in the choreography of the painting, as she becomes cinched to the works during the period of making through her rehearsal, movement and improvised deliberations.
The pitch of Roth’s tumbling visions vibrates with jubilance and gravity; labor weaves the fibers of pleasure, solidity gives way to evanescence, smoke congeals into mass and the spleen becomes a heart that throbs with compassion.
Victoria Roth (b. 1986 Paris, France) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received her MFA from Columbia University in 2014 and her BA in History of Art & Architecture from Brown University in 2008. Recent solo exhibitions include Insides, fAN Kunstverein, Vienna, AT and Off the Banks, Brennan & Griffin, New York, NY. Recent group exhibitions include The Pit Presents / Step Sister, The Pit, Los Angeles, CA, Furries, Helena Anrather, New York, NY, The Clear and the Obscure, Lulu, Mexico City, MX, In the Mix, Hometown Gallery, Brooklyn, NY. Roth was an artist in residence at the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program Residency in Brooklyn, NY in 2015-2016. This is her second exhibition with the gallery.