Hein Koh is at WINDOW with Anton Kern Gallery
It's been a long time, almost 3 full years to be more precise, since the last time we've featured the works by Hein Koh, and we're happy to see her practice developing and her career continuing upwards. Such trajectory is about to be marked with an opening of her first solo exhibition of paintings at Anton Kern Gallery's WINDOW through April 17.
In the past year, the Brooklyn-based artist slowly shifted from sculptures towards paintings on cut-out panels and onto charcoal and oil stick works on canvas. This change was partly informed by a practical need to simplify her practice during the year of pandemic, but also, a desire to have the freedom to make loose, expressive, and emotional works. And however much we've enjoyed her exuberant, plastic-feeling spandex sculptures, we are thrilled to see the vigorous results of such unforeseen circumstances.
Characterized with layers upon layers of exhaustive mark-making, Koh's paintings are still featuring her recurring cast of fantastical botanical creatures that seemed to have aged or even deteriorated in the meantime. Brocolli and carrots, vegs usually representing the high standards of perfection and goodness that women are held to, are now captured smoking ciggies while wearing heels, boots, fishnet stockings, in what seems like the middle of the night. Depicted mostly in pairs, these quirky visuals are meant to be talking about the dynamics of pairings, whether couples, soulmates, or even the two sides of one’s self. Opposing these hopefully happy couples is one single work which is symbolizing solitude and existential loneliness while walking away and blowing an optimistic message - OK!
The work will be exhibited at the WINDOW venue at 91 Walker Street and will be on view for passersby 24/7. And to mark the warmer and hopefully brighter period ahead of us, the artist and the gallery organized an opening this Thursday, March 11th from 5-7 pm, with drinks served inside which can be, of course, enjoyed safely outside. —Sasha Bogojev