Galerie Nordenhake has the great pleasure to present an exhibition with new works by US-American artist Spencer Finch, to open during the Gallery Weekend Berlin. Themes uniting the diverse works in the show are the complexities and pleasures of apprehending sensations. Most of the works deal with misperceptions or misapprehensions. They are treated not necessarily as failure but as pleasurable moments hinting at a seeing prior to recognition and rationalisation.
The seduction of misperception is suggested in a group of photographs: in reality representations of cherry blossoms in a pond, they appear as delicate images of clouds in the sky bringing to mind Alfred Stieglitz’ series of abstract photographs “Equivalence”. In another work the white concrete sculptures sitting directly on the gallery floor recall piles of snow as they were ubiquitous in the streets during last winter.
The artist maps the limits of his own field of vision in a series of drawings that compare far peripheral and central vision, but they also contrast linguistic and visual descriptions of colour. Spencer Finch recored the colour of a car rushing by on a highway once it appeared in his field of vision and painted his colour impression with pigments on paper. Like an researcher, he adds a written account of the vehicle’s actual colour and form. The central vision differs from the perception in peripheral areas of the eye in respect to colour and form and proves it as erroneous.
The uncertainty of perception — that there is more to reality than our bodily senses could register — is implyed in the works after false-colour images. The colourful oil pastels look entirely abstract but are in fact truly representational as they render thermograms of the windows in the artist’s studio.
Spencer Finch is known for a multi-layered artistic practice in which he explores the mechanism and mysteries of perception. Many of his poetic and witty works aim at preserving the memory of a sensorial experience, be it a pile of snow or moonlight in Venice. He bases his unconventional and meticulous representations on extended research and rigorous measurement while his art acknowledges the difference and distance of all representation and reinforces the beauty of the fleeting nature of the observed world.