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Exhibition by Brooklyn-based artist Gregg Louis opens at Nohra Haime Gallery
Installation view.

NEW YORK, NY.- “Psychic Ménagerie,” an exhibition by Brooklyn-based artist Gregg Louis including a video, 10 sculptures, 15 prints, and wallpaper, is on view at the Nohra Haime Gallery from March 19th through April 27th.

Louis’ new video titled Blots (2013) opens the exhibition. A grid of 9 screens depict 9 participants in a faux psychological experiment. Louis, who serves as the administrator and is centrally featured, presents a series of abstract shapes on index cards. One by one, he slowly turns the cards and exposes the shapes to the participants, which clamor to respond with the first thing that comes to mind. The result is a cacophony of answers, and as the video unfolds it becomes more like Hollywood Squares than Freud’s couch.

Throughout the main gallery are Louis’ uncanny Inkling sculptures. From a distance, perched on top of display stands, the sculptures have a striking resemblance to specimens found in a Natural History Museum. But upon closer investigation, they become surreal forms that defy any typical taxonomy. These strange creatures are actually constructed of wigs, horns, and glass eye balls. Louis says, “The Inkling works came out of this idea of cloud gazing. An act many of us as children participated in. You look up towards the sky and allow your imagination to freely associate the shapes that float by you. I think of the Inkling sculptures as me trying to breathe life into those loosely identified shapes by bringing them down to earth and giving them a tangible form. The sculptures that result are often the strange residue of interpretation.”

Sharing space with Louis’ Inklings are his Shadow works. These edgy prints also pick up on the theme of interpretation and ontology. Using the ubiquitous Rorschach technique, the artist creates distinct prints out of sunless tanning lotion. The images that follow portray foreboding entities which feel simultaneously empty and powerful.

Gregg Louis is a Brooklyn-based artist born in St. Louis, Missouri. He has exhibited solo shows at Nohra Haime Gallery, NYC (2011); Atrium Gallery, St. Louis (2011); and Hotel Maria Kapel (collaboration), Hoorn, Netherlands (2011

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March 29, 2013

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