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Regen Projects' first exhibition with Mexican artist Gabriel Kuri opens in Los Angeles
Installation view of Gabriel Kuri at Regen Projects, Los Angeles. Photo: Brian Forrest. Courtesy the artist and Regen Projects, Los Angeles.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Regen Projects announces its first exhibition with Gabriel Kuri. Bringing together the artist’s recent explorations into the form, function, and materiality of everyday utilitarian objects, the show will feature a series of new sculptures composed of consumer materials and found elements that touch upon the relationship of value and exchange in contemporary global society.

Kuri has long been interested in the formal and conceptual possibilities of sculpture as well as the poetry and humor inherent in everyday materials. Arranged along the gallery’s walls are five “soft metal” works that are at once playful and theoretical in nature. Building upon ideas expressed in an earlier series, these pieces are comprised of found materials including silver insulation foam, string, crushed tin cans, conch shells, a doorstop, and play money. Engaging the formal principles of sculpture, these simple constructions form an exercise in equilibrium, as their shape is a direct result of the careful balance of their components. Juxtaposing the malleable quality of the insulation foam are five wall-mounted stainless steel sculptures, interspersed in between the “soft metal” works, and modeled after the ubiquitous waste paper receptacles found in public spaces. Their surfaces mimic the design of the repositories upon which they are based and feature the universally recognized text, Thank You, as well as an open void through which to discard refuse. Recontextualized within the gallery’s walls the sculptures blur the line between art and functional object.

Also on view is a cluster of modular works consisting of volcanic rocks connected by inflated condoms. The coupling of these two distinct and disparate materials—one organic the other manmade—creates a palpable tension. For Kuri the ancient porous surfaces of the volcanic rocks are reminiscent of the landscape of his native Mexico. The rocks are linked with condoms whose opaque skins are filled with air suggesting their impermeable yet ultimately ephemeral character. Similarly precarious is a composition of metal discs held in place within the folds of a packing blanket. Painted in bright primary colors, the discs reference logos from banking and credit institutions and appear as if they could topple over at any given moment.

In addition to being Kuri’s first solo presentation at the gallery, this marks the artist’s inaugural exhibition in Los Angeles. He will also be included in the Hammer Museum’s Made in L.A. 2014 biennial opening June 15.

Gabriel Kuri (b. 1970, Mexico City) lives and works in Los Angeles. He studied at the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plásticas U.N.A.M. Mexico and Goldsmiths College of Art, London. Recent solo exhibitions include All Probability Resolves Into Form, The Common Guild, Glasgow, Scotland (2014); bottled water branded water, Parc Saint Léger, Pougues-les-Eaux, France (2013); Before Contingency After the Fact, South London Gallery, London, UK (2011); Bergen Kunsthall, Bergen, Norway (2011); nobody needs to know the price of your saab, Blaffer Art Museum, Houston (2010) [travelled to Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2011)]; join the dots and make a point, Kunstverein Freiburg, Germany (2010) [travelled to Kunstverein Bielefeld, Germany (2010)]; and Soft Information in Your Hard Facts, Museion Bolzano, Italy (2010); among others.

Kuri’s work is held in permanent museum collections worldwide, including Tate Modern, London; Centre Pompidou, Paris; FRAC des Pays de la Loire, France; CAC Málaga, Spain; Museion Bolzano, Italy; Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin; Museo Jumex, Mexico City; Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Chicago; Seattle Art Museum, Seattle; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; and Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, San Diego; among others.

His work has been the subject of numerous catalogues and artists books, including All Probability Resolves Into Form (Mousse Publishing, 2014); bottled water branded water (onestar press, 2013); consummation breakdown (onestar press, 2011); join the dots and make a point (Sternberg Press, 2011); and Compost Index (Roma, 2008); to name a few.

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