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Lucy Pullen explores phenomena and color in new exhibition at Romer Young Gallery
Color and media are ubiquitous and immersive. Talking about either is like describing water to a fish.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- Romer Young Gallery presents its second solo exhibition with Canadian artist Lucy Pullen. For her exhibition, HUE, Pullen explores phenomena and color using a wide range of media. Her goal is to preserve neoteny- recently defined by Joichi Ito as, ‘the retention of childlike attributes in adulthood: idealism, experimentation and wonder’ (In an Open-Source Society, Innovating by the Seat of Our Pants, J. Ito, Science Section of the New York Times: Dec 5, 2011).

Color and media are ubiquitous and immersive. Talking about either is like describing water to a fish. Using sculpture, painting and video, with colored plexi-glass, reflective material, polished aluminum, corian and footage from a cloud chamber Pullen joyfully builds a creative response to an increasingly mediated society. The distinction between art and media, like drawing with a pencil or working on a computer, quickly fades on all but one front: you can hide out in one, and not in the other.

Each work in this exhibition has a secret life in the media. The wall works respond to repositioning and to light. HUE extends the premise of audience participation articulated by Marcel Duchamp in The Creative Act (1947); that the viewer completes a work of art. When we see a shift in hue, either by walking past or through digital means, the work of art is complete. When these works are photographed with a flash, they are completed. Color is a force felt strongest when used simply. Primary and secondary colors form tertiary shades that lead toward the state of grey. Grey is in fact the ultimate color. The pieces exhibited here encompass the spectrum to such a degree that “grey” becomes a material state.

HUE is a topological study of intersecting hues. Alternatively reflective, transparent and, opaque planes entertain painterly questions without the use of paint. Colors mix through physical proximity. Shifts in hue depend on the physical location of the viewer. Movement completes the experience. The artist writes: “These wall works are responsive to light and require movement, like a sculpture asks for circumnavigation… It is as if the sculptures and the wall works are trading roles." The exhibition includes four sculptures, four wall works, and one video.

Pullen’s work exists on the cusp of old and new media. Her first exhibition at the gallery explored the phenomena of darkness and contemporary abstraction. The Effect Effect was a monochromatic exhibition of six nocturnal landscapes painted at dusk, with Payne's grey on aluminum, and three aluminum sculptural polyhedra. Recent exhibitions include The Cloud Chamber and Related Works at the Henry Art Gallery, Seattle (2011), and Artspeak, Vancouver (2010). Pullen lives and works in New York. The artist gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.



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