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14 to April 19, 2014
reception | Friday, March 14, 2014 | 5 to 8pm
Magazine | Visual
845 W Washington Blvd
Chicago, IL 60607
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Pituitumorphology, his third solo show at Western Exhibitions,
PAUL NUDD will present selections from four bodies
of ongoing work: mutant humanoid figure drawings, mutant portrait
paintings, sputtering goo videos, and a 20-page catalog of the
artist’s sketches. The show opens on Friday, March 14
with a public reception from 5 to 8pm and runs through
April 19, 2014.
Paul Nudd is a prolific artist. His output is not just a symptom
of how he uses his time, but a central motif in the work itself,
in keeping with the unchanged central themes of the work: primal
sludge, growth and disease, systems of classification, mutation
and life, patterning and mark making, too.
Nudd’s figure drawings are cartoonishly terrifying mutants,
alien/human mash-ups besotted with tumors, warts, lesions, growths,
male and female genitalia and mis-placed pubic hair. A sub-series
of new drawings are smaller; adolescent sized, or juveniles, less
developed, but in the process of mutating with exaggerated physical
characteristics of puberty: armpit hair, rampant acne, overall
asymmetry, misshapen breasts, pubic hair, enlarged genitalia,
gender confusion, hormonal shifts, mood swings and erections.
In these works, the repetition of pea-green and small internal
lumps reference the pituitary gland, an adolescent’s albatross,
here forming into something unhealthy, or dirty, such as a tumor.
Paul Nudd’s mixed-media paintings on canvas offer up images
of head-like entities emerging from colorful thick swaths of paint.
Nudd refers to the seemingly random, yet tightly composed, areas
heavily textured with collage, as "material cannibalism,"
or a self-contained, enclosed system of the use of highly specific,
yet arbitrary textured materials. Nine new videos presented on
vintage monitors denote a return to lo-fi form, now with significant
color shifts, shorter cuts, and faster editing. The videos are
endless cycles of spastic rupturing of gunk and goo, reflecting
Nudd’s artistic practice as a whole. The exhibition will
be accompanied by a 20-page catalog of the artist's sketches in
an edition of 100 and a CD that collects Nudd’s infrequent
sound works also in an edition of 100.
Paul Nudd’s solo
and two-person shows include Bourouina Gallery in Berlin, Jack
the Pelican Presents in Brooklyn, telephonebooth in Kansas City
and the Hyde Park Art Center, Bodybuilder & Sportsmen, and
Dogmatic, all in Chicago. His work has been included in group
shows in Dusseldorf, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Houston, Denver
and was recently included in Seeing Is a Kind of Thinking:
A Jim Nutt Companion at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.
His prodigious zine work can be found in several national artist
book collections including the Museum of Modern Art; Art Institute
of Chicago; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; New Jersey Public
Library; National Academy of Design, New York; Indiana University
and School of the Art Institute of Chicago His collaborative printmaking
work with the comix artist ONSMITH has been written about in Art
in Print. He has curated shows at Antena, Dogmatic Butchershop
and Western Exhibitions, all in Chicago and his work has been
written about in the Chicago Tribune, art
ltd, Modern Painters, New American Paintings
and New City. Abraham Ritchie, writing in ArtSlant
called his recent curatorial effort, “Heads on Poles”,
organized with Scott Wolniak, “the
Inadvertent Chicago Biennial”. Paul Nudd received his
MFA from the University of Illinois-Chicago in 2001 and he lives
and works in Berwyn, Illinois.