Ori Gersht – On Reflection
On View January 29, 2015 - March 14, 2015
CRG is pleased to present London-based artist Ori Gersht’s seventh solo exhibition with the gallery.
Ori Gersht’s recent works examine how painting and photography represents reality. Gersht interacts with three Jan Brueghel the Elder’s floral paintings from 1606, now in Vienna’s Kunst Historisches Museum. For Gersht, Brueghel’s painting and the city of Vienna embrace a certain sense of exuberant decadence and imperialism. A metaphor he connects to our own time.
The mirror is a main element of this new body of work. By its nature, it raises the question of what is real and what is perceived as real. Gersht begins by recreating with silk flowers an exact replica of Brueghel’s floral paintings. The replica is placed in front of a tempered glass mirror. The mirror is subjected to electrical charges. On explosion, the glass brakes apart and falls away into a cascade of mirrored shards. To capture the event, Gersht positions side by side, two large format digital cameras, focusing them on two different optical planes: one focusing on the glass surface of the mirror, the other – focusing three meters away on the vase of flowers reflected in the mirror.
This approach allows Gersht to capture simultaneously two contrasting views of the same event. One camera captures the materiality of the mirror and the fractals created by the crackled silver on the back of the glass. While the other camera captures the illusion of the disintegrating flowers reflected in the mirror. Each camera captures an alternative reality, questioning the relationship between photography and a single objective truth.
The relationship between destruction and creation is an underlying concept in Gersht’s work. “I’m interested in those oppositions of attraction and repulsion and how the moment of destruction in the exploding mirrors becomes for me the moment of creation.”
This new body of work represents a fundamental shift from the earlier Blow Up photographs in which the object itself (the still life) was photographed as it shattered. In On Reflection it is the image (the illusion) as contained on the mirror surface that is exploding.
Ori Gersht will be the subject of three solo exhibitions in 2015: Silvers, at the Tel Aviv Museum of Contemporary Art; Survey, at the Sinclair-Haus Museum in Bad Homborg Germany and Landscape and Memory at the Towner Gallery, Eastbourne, UK.