The Jack Hanley Gallery, New York, is pleased to present a solo show of the work of Marie Lorenz, titled SHIPWRECKS. With a boat as simultaneous subject and object, both a manifestation of the psyche and tool by which to wade through its tides, Marie Lorenz’s work circumnavigates uncertainty to heighten one’s awareness of place. In this show, Lorenz synthesizes real peril and sophisticated portrayal. A boat’s wreckage enters the physical space of the gallery revealing premonitions, requiems and all that stands between.
The centerpiece of the show is a video that documents Lorenz’s actual shipwreck off the coast of Italy last year. Shot from the capsized perspective, the shore is barely visible; the horizon flipped entirely on its side abstracts the heaving seascape. The only sound heard is that of a breath changing from a pant to a desperate choking. Put in the mind of climax; we think we are watching someone die. A rubbing of the recovered boat will hang in the gallery as an epitaph- at once the end and the sum. Like relics of an archeological find, a series of small collographs tie the work together. Each one is a miniature toy boat, smashed and printed. In effect, they are artifacts of representation, a peeled skin of three dimensional form. They are actual objects, but the toys themselves were representations. Flattened out and inked to define a subtle relief, the collographs call to mind a peeled abstraction of a Mercator projection.
Marie Lorenz’s artwork has long been about exploration and narrative. In her current and ongoing project “The Tide and Current Taxi”, Lorenz ferries people throughout New York in a handmade boat. She studies tidal charts of the harbor and uses the tidal and river currents to propel the boat. A blog that she publishes (tideandcurrenttaxi.org) tells the stories of each trip. In her own voice, they are parables about the changing city, parallels between web navigation and the real life navigation of Lorenz and her participants.