For the first time Tomory Dodge exhibits a sweeping body of new works on paper; comprised of roughly 40 watercolors and collages. The works will be shown concurrently at both CRG Gallery in New York and at ACME in Los Angeles. The Exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue co-published by both galleries and includes an essay by Pierre Sterckx.
While watercolors and small studies in oil have long been integral to Dodge’s process and have often served as a formative layer in the development of larger works, this recent undertaking constitutes gestures solely understood and determined within the medium of collage and watercolor. With passages that appear to revisit or reconsider his work anew from a clearly defined vantage, the images are characterized by the structural limitations and advantages within the medium of paper.
In works like Sea of Objects (2009) Dodge makes reference to works inspired by trash strewn swimming pools and receding aquatic vistas, though instead of his signature interplay of gradient surface and thickly applied tranches of prismatic and textured paint we see washing blends of watercolor overlaid with torn and cut out fragments of photographic media. Wherein his works on canvas Dodge has worked within an exorbitant gestural vocabulary of paint in the service of representation; the medium precariously bound into recognizable forms often mimicking optical phenomena like lens flares and starbursts, here the dialogue could be said to have come full circle from its constituent sources. Pieces of appropriated matter, upon closer inspection: scraps of architecture, images from the Hubble telescope, sprawling city lights, and wildlife among others, now serve as patterned and textured approximations of his painted gestures. It is as though the sources of his inspiration; the outerlands of Los Angeles, arctic ice drifts, collapsed and exploded structures, and general debris have now been reintegrated or recycled via a process of redocumention and redestruction.
It is through this convolution that Dodge has managed to reinvent his formal / representational play on a wholly unique scale. With moments that might be reminiscent of Kurt Schwitters’ appropriated forms Dodge uses the layering of cut paper and watercolor as a means of reassembly and condensed structural exploration within his work.
In addition to this exhibition a forthcoming print edition derived from the work will soon be available through CRG Editions.