Transylvania




Due to popular demand this show has been extended and will now run all the way up to Christmas!

Artist Biography: Chris Dean is one of a small number of artists with a studio practice dedicated to lenticular work. Dean‘s interest in the medium evolved from early experiments with stereoscopic imagery at San Jose State in the 1990’s and has grown to include a range of methods for capturing and producing motion 3D lenticular. Since his first solo show in 2006 Dean has exhibited with a number of well known artists including Mark RydenRobert WilliamsGary BasemanRon English and many others in galleries across the United States. In 2008 Chris Dean and Glen Barr were chosen to represent Detroit in an international campaign by 1800 Tequila that featured their work in numerous magazines and billboards. Dean‘s first solo appearance outside the US will take place November 2010 at Mauger Modern Art in London.

Transylvania

‘All things, everywhere, are in a process of transformation. Caterpillars turn into moths, mountains become sand, the town of Hartland Michigan gets an Applebees and a Target in the same year. When you view things with enough perspective the idea of stability is easily seen as an illusion. The irony is that our sense of well being seems tied to this illusion, we are upset by change and fight to keep the status quo. We are in for disappointment.

Detroit is disappointing for many people. The city once called “the Paris of the west” is probably more famous for its haunting ruins than any recent accomplishments. Large parts of the city are returning to nature, trees grow through abandoned buildings and pheasants are now common in many areas. People are farming land where houses once stood and prairies are expanding by the acre. While some of this is genuinely charming it exists within a system of political corruption, poverty, crime, inadequate public services and a failing school system. People born here of a certain generation, like my grandparents, do not recognize the city when they return. For them it is all loss.

But not everyone’s views are so bleak, despite the very real problems. The depopulation of the city over the past 4 decades has created many unusual opportunities, and people ready to take advantage of them. The creative community has invested heavily in the city, buying houses and vacant industrial spaces that might otherwise have turned to rubble. Inexpensive and generous, often beautiful, homes are easy to come by and several notable neighborhoods have been transformed through the positive effects of this mindset. Relaxed code enforcement and abundant availability of materials have allowed large environmental art experiments, like Tyree Guyton’s project on Heidelberg Street, to flourish. Urban agriculture benefits from similar oversights; people routinely tend large scale community gardens on land they do not own and some even keep livestock despite the city ordinances.

There are other opportunities as well, some requiring financial investment and others little more than a good idea and some elbow grease. But there is a point to be made beyond the potential benefits or losses for any particular individual. Detroit, like everything, is changing. The unraveling of its affluence is a reminder that we live in a world of constant transformation, a place where things have a lifespan and eventually return to their origins. Detroit tells us that not even the grand things of this world are exempt from this fate; it is our shared destiny.

Transylvania is a look at this destiny as it unfolds in the city of Detroit. Sadness and loss, hope and prosperity weave in and out, back and forth, as they have since the beginning of time. The process of change tests our desire to own, possess and control, and reveals us to be frightfully more connected to the natural world than we are comfortable with. In accepting the world as it is, forever transforming, we flow with reality instead of fighting a tiring and unwinnable battle. Transylvania is a monument to change in all its manifest forms’. 

Chris Dean 2010

 

Duration 03 November 2010 - 24 December 2010
Times 10.30-6.00 Mon-Fri 12.00-3.00 Sat
Cost Free
Venue Mauger Modern (London)
Address 81 Rochester Row London SW1P 1LJ, ,
Contact 020 233 8755 / alison@maugermodern.com / www.maugermodern.com

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