Nohra Haime Gallery presents Psychic Ménagerie, an exhibition of new works by Brooklyn-based artist Gregg Louis, opening on March 19th and running through April 27th.
In the front project space, Louis presents a new video work; Blots (2013) consisting of 9 screens all depicting participants in a pseudo psychological experiment. Louis, who serves as the administrator of the test, is featured centrally in the composition and presents a series of abstract shapes on index cards. As he turns each card, he reveals a shape to the participants who then promptly respond with the first word that comes to mind. This result is cacophony of answers. As the video unfolds it becomes more like Hollywood Squares than Freud's couch.
Filling the main gallery are Louis's uncanny Inkling sculptures. These strange creatures are constructed out of wigs, horns, and glass eyes. Perched on top of display stands, the sculptures may initially resemble natural history specimens, but upon a closer investigation they become surreal forms that defy any typical scientific taxonomy. Louis says, "The Inkling works came from the idea of cloud gazing. A game many of us as children participated in. You look up towards the sky and allow your imagination to freely associate with clouds that float by you. I think of the Inkling sculptures as my attempt to bring life into those loosely identified shapes by giving them a tangible form. The sculptures that result are often the strange residue of interpretation. "
Also in the main gallery is a selection of prints entitled Shadows. Using the Rorschach technique, Louis creates mono-prints by folding sunless tanning lotion into sheets of watercolor paper. The images that result depict foreboding mask-like entities that serve as a wink-and-nod to both the Jungian concept of 'shadow self ' & the contemporary absurdity of characters like Tan Mom.
Psychic Ménagerie continues the artist's ongoing investigation into perception and ontology; and playfully weaves together darker tones of human psychology with playful references to contemporary pop culture and everyday life.
Gregg Louis is a Brooklyn based artist born in St. Louis, Missouri. He exhibited solo shows at Nohra Haime Gallery, NYC (2011) , Atrium Gallery, St. Louis (2011), and Hotel Maria Kapel (collaboration), Hoorn Netherlands (2011). His group exhibitions include Doing Easy , Los Caminos Gallery, St. Louis (2011); Life In A Peaceful New World, Interstate Projects, Brooklyn (2011); I'm OK, You're OK, Concertina Gallery, Chicago (2010); A New Currency, curated by Dan Cameron, 55 Delancey Street, NYC (2009). Louis was awarded a VBS Fonds collaborative grant (2011), SNS REAAL Fonds collaborative project grant (2011), and SVA Alumni Scholarship Award (2009). His publications include Wall Street Journal (2013), Riverfront Times (2011), PaperMag.com (2009), and Gothamist.com
(2009). Louis received his B.F.A. from the Missouri State University, M.F.A. from the School of Visual Arts, and held residency (2009) at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.
DATES: March 19 - April 27, 2013
RECEPTION FOR THE ARTIST: Tuesday, March 19 from 6-8pm