SHOWCASE highlights the work of contemporary young artists and curators we work with and whose work you will see in museums and galleries across NSW and beyond in the near future.
American artist Brendan Lynch is a rising star on the international art scene with exhibitions at leading institutions in New York, London, Paris, Rome, Brussels and Moscow under his belt. Having caught the eye of Australian private collector, Danny Goldberg, Lynch represents one of the youngest artists featured in the Goldberg Collection.
Lynch is a member of the Brooklyn-based organisation The Still House Group, made up of eight emerging artists all living and working in New York. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Lynch moved to New York to complete a Bachelor and Master of Fine Art at the School of Visual Arts.
Lynch’s work is currently on tour throughout Australia as part of the M&G NSW touring exhibition Stars + Stripes: American Art from the 21st Century from the Goldberg Collection. The exhibition is currently on show at Manning Regional Art Gallery until Sunday 17 January 2016.
MB: Your work Future Monsters is included in Stars + Stripes: American Art from the 21st Century from the Goldberg Collection currently on tour to nine regional centres around Australia. How do you think Australian audiences will react to your work?
BL: It is difficult to assume how an individual will respond to a work. That said, it is fascinating to think about. My piece uses two different images, one is of the two main characters from the Pixar film Monsters Inc. and the other is an image of the rapper Future. They are forced to exist on the same surface and moulded together with the aluminum leaf. These images are pulled from different cultural arenas, and forced into a conversation with each other. This conversation changes based on the individual’s experience with these images. You could see it as just a figure and some cartoons, or in a more specific sense if these images are recognisable. Art is a place where anything can be brought together, offering limitless possibilities.
MB: Stars + Stripes features a diverse selection of works from contemporary American artists. The show includes established artists such as Haim Steinbach and Richard Jackson, as well as the next generation of artists such as Sam Falls, Sebastian Black and yourself. How do you feel about being included in this mix?
BL: It is very exciting. I feel honoured to be included with artists that I have known personally and have seen grow, as well as artists that have come before me and pushed boundaries. Having a work of mine in the same room with Seth Price and Haim Steinbach feels surreal. I am interested in how context effects perception, and how a piece can have a life beyond my original intentions. Similar to what I was saying about two seemingly random images forced to have a conversation with each other, my piece has taken on new meaning simply by existing around these works.
"I feel honoured to be included with artists that I have known personally and have seen grow, and artists that have come before me and pushed boundaries."
MB: Your brother, Dylan Lynch, is also featured in Stars + Stripes, do you ever collaborate or do you retain very separate artistic practices?
BL: We each have our own practice, but we are very much in constant dialogue. We live and work in the same studio. So we spend a lot of time with each other. Watching movies, walking around, sharing music, looking at art, and discussing ideas. I also have two other brothers. Thomas Lynch III, the oldest, who is an artist, and one who comes between Dylan and I, Ryan Lynch, who is a musician. It is intriguing to see how we all grew up in a similar environment, but we all make different kinds of work. A similar upbringing can yield such different results.
MB: You are part of the Still House Group made up of eight artists. Can you explain the structure of the group – is it an artists’ collective, commercial entity or collaborative practice?
BL: We have a shared studio space in Red Hook, which is a neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY. The studio is divided up into studios for the permanent artists, as well as an additional studio for residencies and an exhibition space. Every three months we invite a new artist to work there, ending with a show. The collaboration between the group is realised not so much through individual works, but in the sharing of ideas, critique, and shows that we put together. It is a community in which everyone contributes. Artists within the group have made collaborative works, and it is something that a shared space facilitates. Still House functions as all of our galleries in a sense. We borrow ideas from different models that we admire, other artist-run spaces, galleries, museums, or past collectives. To me, what makes Still House unique is that it’s a system that is constantly changing depending on the current situation of the artist. It can expand and contract based on the needs of the group. It is something that has evolved far beyond our original ideas. I am excited to continue to work with this group and see where it goes.
MB: At just 30 years old you have had considerable international success including exhibitions at White Cube, London, Zabludowicz Collection, London and Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Belgium. What’s next for you?
BL: I am currently working on a project for a conceptual gallery space called Water Mcbeer, which was created by the artist Henry Gunderson. It is a fictional gallery space that exists only through online images. Each artist is given a model-size version of the gallery space to create their show. I have always been drawn to the seemingly infinite number of spaces and ways that art can exist. I am not by any means against galleries and museums, but I also don’t believe that art should be limited to these spaces. There should not be a hierarchy in terms of where an experience or an idea can happen. Context is everything and it should be explored. I have recently started a curatorial project called The Porch Museum. It is located in the porch of my east village apartment. It was very much inspired by Henry’s project. I have done one show so far and have been working on setting up various exhibitions with a range of different artists.
Stars + Stripes:American Art from the 21st Century from the Goldberg Collection is currently on show at Manly Art Gallery & Museum until Sunday 30 August 2015. The exhibition is touring to nine galleries across NSW, VIC and QLD.
A Bathurst Regional Art Gallery exhibition in conjunction with Lisa and Danny Goldberg, toured by Museums & Galleries of NSW. Curated by Richard Perram OAM.
Madeleine Brady, M&G NSW Gallery Programs and Touring Exhibitions Coordinator.