FEINKOST is pleased to present its second solo exhibition of Berlin-based artist Ignacio Uriarte. Entitled “Typologies”, the exhibition is a meditation on parameters, taxonomies and predestinations available within materials.
“Typologies” presents a continuation of Ignacio Uriarte’s research and his use of the office place as a total medium. Complete with all its textures, materials, behaviors and structures the artist filters the data of the workstation through an aesthetic language of art history referencing moments such as minimalism, conceptual art, hard-edge abstraction, and land art. Using this bi-lingual approach Uriarte analogizes actions and processes legible to anyone who has worked in a cubicle or walked through the galleries of MoMA.
Within Uriarte’s practice the parameters for any given project are predetermined by the chosen medium’s natural limitations, capabilities and use-value. These restrictions become a gift that builds a potential of trajectories for meticulous monochromes and conceptual compositions. The result is a body of work that conveys its own internal logic of beginning and end. The process and outcome of each artwork is a fait accompli as if the work already intrinsically existed within the medium and Uriarte simply had to bring it forth.
“Upper” and “Downer” (both 2010) each consist of 9 interconnected drawings made with the artist’s father’s first typewriter, an Adler from 1965. Using the graphic nature of the percentage sign (%) he converts the symbol onomatopoeically into its specific meaning as a kind of gestural hieroglyphic. From afar a woven topography makes a wry wink to the ebb and flow of financial markets.
In the work on paper “Four color monochrome I” from 2010, doodling becomes a haptic methodology whereby whimsical scribblings create an optical landscape. This drawing about drawing combines the four signature colors of the Bic pen. Red, blue, black and green morph together in a writhing play on the unconscious gestures of the aimless hand. The nearby slide projection “XL” (2009) is a ticking counter that zooms back and uses the Bic pen itself as a numerical object.
The central work for the exhibition is Uriarte’s new film entitled “The History of the Typewriter Recited by Michael Winslow” (2009). The actor/comedian Michael Winslow, famous for his role in the slapstick Police Academy movies and his gifted ability to orally mimic any sound, is seen in the Hi-fi calm of a recording studio making an oral history of the typewriter. Shot in digital cinema (RED), the film conjures the otherwise unseen typewriter through a timeline of its every technological clic, chuc, stach, and fhiit, punctuated by swiffs of paper and reeling cranks. The film recalls Robert Morris’ iconic work “Box with the sound of its own making” from 1961 where, through an internal recording, the sculptural object self-described its own origin and outcome.
Taking a sampling of nearly every model of typewriter from the 1880s to its demise in the 1980s, one can imagine an entire history of the last hundred years in all its World Wars, manifestoes, literary classics and private love letters in makes called Triumph and Imperial; mythologies found in Olympia and Hermes, Duchamp in the 1924 Underwood and our own Michael Winslow in the 1915 Faktotum. The title of this video is both that and the piece’s content as Uriarte has recorded this title phrase over and over through the keystrokes of each model which is then mimicked by Winslow. The eponymous nature becomes meta-referential and onomatopoeic in form, subject matter and meaning.
Ignacio Uriarte’s work can be seen in the exhibition “Drawing Time“, Ensemble Poirel, Metz opening on May 6th; and in upcoming solo exhibitions at Vierter Stock, Berlin opening on July 17th and at the Kunstverein Arnsberg opening on July 23rd. The artist’s work can be found in the public collections of La Panera, Lleida; CAM, Alicante; ARTIUM, Vitoria; Fundación Marcelino Botín, Santander; MUSAC, León, Colección Jumex, Mexico City; and the FRAC Piemonte. Uriarte was the recipient of grants from the MUSAC, the CAM and most recently the Fundación Marcelino Botín. In the reviews section of the April issue of Frieze magazine one can find a write-up on “The History of the Typewriter...” written by curator/critic Max Andrews. For any questions, images or further information please contact Aaron Moulton or Mette Ravnkilde Nielsen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FEINKOST wishes to thank the Botschaft von Spanien, Berlin for their kind support.