NEW YORK, NY.- Lehmann Maupin
presents LUSH LIFE, an exhibition curated by Franklin Evans and Omar Lopez-Chahoud and inspired by Richard Price's 2008 novel of the same title. LUSH LIFE includes 60 artists, and nine Lower East Side galleries, including Lehmann Maupin. Each gallery features a sub-exhibition reflecting the idea of one of the nine chapters in the novel. Evans and Lopez-Chahoud selected one artist from each gallery and solicited additional artist recommendations from each of them to participate in the exhibition.
Lehmann Maupin represents Chapter Four: Let it Die and exhibits the work of Jackie Saccoccio, Jessica Dickinson, Matthew Weinstein, Dani Leventhal, Rashid Johnson, Claudia Weber, Jose Lerma, Kai Schiemenz, Iris Fluegel, Robert Beck, Robert Melee, Tommy Hartung, Nina Lola Bachhuber, Cynthia Lin and Amy Longenecker-Brown. Chapter four in Price's novel addresses the attempt to ignore and let a story die, to allow for a neighborhood's history to die, and to actively bury the past and the difficulty of finding a fairer answer or resolution to a complex situation.
Both Jackie Saccoccio and Jessica Dickinson offer works that through their process-based painting and drawing emphasize the physical layers of residue to a literal past. Saccoccio's work looks to an earlier era (mid-century New York abstraction). Dani Leventhal's blood/skinning drawings, Matthew Weinstein's death-tracking skeletal hand and frisbee, and Rashid Johnson's literal death reflection mirror present the subject as non-elusively and frontal.
Claudia Weber, Jose Lerma, Kai Schiemenz, Iris Fluegel, Nina Lola Bachhuber, and Amy Longenecker-Brown made work specific to the consideration of both history passing (its death) and the neighborhood in transition, both themes of Price's novel. Robert Melee's and Tommy Hartung's sculptures challenge the ease to which a past can disappear and/or morph into a new form. Cynthia Lin's larger-than-life distorted drawing of skin has an allusion to a possible lifeless state. While, Robert Beck's site-specific shrine alludes to the shrine in the novel that emerges after the murder and erodes in a short week.
Price's novel is set in the contemporary Lower East Side and, through a murder investigation, exposes the dynamically changing community of the neighborhood, which despite its evolution retains a ghostly and vital link to its layered past. The deep and varied history of the neighborhood now includes the Lower East Side galleries as new community members. The premise of community is reflected in the cooperative nature of the galleries' and artists' participation in the exhibition, which uses Price's novel to critically consider concepts of neighborhood and change. LUSH LIFE will be the present for what will become a living ghost to the future form into which the Lower East Side will inevitably morph.
Other participating galleries include: Collette Blanchard Gallery, Eleven Rivington, Invisible-Exports, On Stellar Rays, Salon 94, Scaramouche, Sue Scott Gallery, and Y Gallery. As part of the exhibition, work by Lehmann Maupin artist Mario Ybarra Jr. is on view at Salon 94.