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Alex Lawler- After Freundlich Review


Reinterprets Freundlich’s modernist paintings


Otto Freundlich Rose window II 1941

Alex Lawler Exhibition – Peter von Kant Gallery     31 March 2016

This exhibition explores Alex Lawler’s reinterpretation of the modernist artist Otto Freudlich’s work, which was originally inspired by the composition in stained glass. Freudlich used abstraction to question ‘art’s function’ and the ‘moral and social crisis of his time’

Alex Lawler reinterprets the paintings of Otto Freundlich with the use of Art Forum magazine. He cuts up shapes out of imagery found within the magazine, the shapes becoming out of context sections from otherwise identifiable works of art. As we don’t know what the snippets mean and we don’t know what the original brushstrokes are from, apart from the odd section from artists recognisable artwork. For example, I recognised a shard of the magazine resembling the work of Chuck Close. when the viewer is looking at the work they are reduced to the idea of flicking through the shards of colours as we would trying to ‘spot the art’

These pictures out of context are reduced to colour without any recognisable features. It is all about the colour and the variety of colours. Lawler has used mixed media for some of the pieces some of them were painted. Lawler has used a post modernist idea of both reusing and remaking. He is reusing an art industry magazine all about the promotion of art and turning it into a piece completely out of the original context.

Lawler has remade Freudlich’s painting which is considered a form of high art culture using material from low culture, Art Forum Magazine which ironically  promotes it contents as if it was a form of high art.

The gallery was not a traditional white cube space some of the walls had brick work and patches of plaster showing. However some walls appeared to be more in the white cube tradition. The gallery included some large pieces of furniture seemingly unconnected with the current exhibition.Gallery itself is a postmodern space.

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