NEW YORK, NY.-
For their eighth exhibition with German artist John Bock, Anton Kern Gallery
is presenting Dead + Juicy, a film and sculptural installation commissioned by The Contemporary Austin which premiered at the museum in 2017. Now staged in New York, the film runs alongside a series of re-envisioned installations spanning two floors.
Referred to as an uncanny musical by the artist, the film follows the protagonist, Lisa as she interacts with a cast of outsized characters, played by local Texan actors. Unfolding through five chapters, shot in contrasting environments across Austin, the viewer is submerged in a hallucinatory melodrama, full of humor and horror. Each location, a barbershop, a bar, a modern house" and a wooded swamp among them, becomes inseparable from the artists haunting visual language, notes of which are reflected and doubled by the presence of the transformed gallery spaces. This installation or sum mutations, as Bock explains combines film, props, soundscapes and projections alongside newly constructed elements and altered gallery spaces.
To construct his visual language, Bock employs an obsessive and highly specific vocabulary made from objects, language, and performative actions turning it into a symbolic system that makes reference to economics, agriculture, science, fashion, music, as well as popular visual culture that shapes the ways in which we live.
John Bock (born 1965 in Gribbohm) is a German multi-media artist who lives and works in Berlin. He studied at the Hochschule fur Bildende Kunste (HfBK) in Hamburg in 1997 under Franz Erhard Walther. His work is included in the public collections of Carnegie Museum, Pittsburg; the Guggenheim, New York; MOCA Los Angeles; the Louisiana Museum, Copenhagen; Ludwig Museum, Cologne; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Museum fur Modern Kunst, Frankfurt Am Main; TATE, London; and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, among many others. Recent solo exhibitions include The Next Quasi-Complex, Prada Foundation, Milan, Italy (2018); Dead + Juicy, The Contemporary Austin, TX (2017); and In the Moloch of the Presence of Being, Berlinische Galerie (2017). He has participated in major international exhibitions including the Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (both 2013 and 2005); Perfoma, New York (2007); Lyon Biennale, Lyon, France (2005); Carnegie International, Pittsburgh, PA (2004); and Documenta 11, Kassel, Germany (2002).