Oscar Tuazon “Action” at Jonathan Viner, London
Action, Oscar Tuazon’s third solo show at Jonathan Viner, features three new bodies of work, each of which confront the definitions of time, medium and process in different ways.
Bearing the traces of the natural elements and debris, Tuazon’s rust paintings in the gallery on 3 Loughborough Street are selected sections of canvas, each a part of a long drop cloth that served as Tuazon’s outdoor working surface. They are marked with the remnants of the metals and tools he used while making sculptures over a period of weeks, with an indexical immediacy that bears likeness to a photogram. The ‘accidental’ compositions on the surface of the canvases are ancillary to the structures made upon them- paintings that reveal the Freudian slips of a sculpture.
In their production, the canvases were connected to the sculptures by Tuazon’s movement between them – the gestures of a human body that interacted physically and democratically with both media, day after day. A horizontal working plane recalls the history of action painting, while the marks and scuffs of the studio environment have strong relation to the practices of artists who have elevated the work surface of the studio to the gallery environment.
The three sculptures in the gallery on Adam’s Row extend Tuazon’s investigation of the ambiguity between work and work surface further, by incorporating studio furniture into the sculptures themselves. The materials and forms of the sculptures’ produced elements overlap and mimic the used table- tops, frames and tressels they are interlocked with, confusing where one ends and the other begins.
The photographs downstairs return to Tuazon’s questioning of the boundary between intentional versus accidental action. Like the canvas surfaces collecting the debris of the outdoors, these mounted photographs of dark, abstracted landscapes are again subjected to unpredictable circumstances. Their material and shape is transformed and sometimes damaged after they pass through an industrial machine used to crush metals. As surface and image are distorted the flat photograph becomes sculptural in a process dictated by chance.
28 September – 3 November 2012
Courtesy of Jonathan Viner Gallery, London