Marathon

10 Nov 2016 — 20 Jan 2017 at Peana Projects in New York, United States

14 DECEMBER 2016
Marathon, Exhibition view. Courtesy of Peana Projects
Marathon, Exhibition view. Courtesy of Peana Projects

Peana Projects is pleased to present Marathon, a group show with works by Silvina Arismendi, David Rodríguez Caballero, Andrés Ramírez Gaviria, Alois Kronschlaeger, Pier Stockholm, and Alexis Zambrano.

A marathon is a long-distance race with a standardized course length of 42.195 kilometres. Referencing the competition’s notable expanse, the word is also used in everyday speech to describe a task requiring exceptional endurance or skill. The specificity of the marathon’s Herculean distance—observed to the thousandth of a kilometre—is a microcosm of the incremental operations of standardization, and revealing of the historical contingencies and human acts found at the heart of any apparently neutral measure.

The history of the marathon is traceable to an individual: the Greek courier Philippides, charged with running the length from Marathon to Athens to announce his army’s victory at the Battle of Marathon in c. 490 Bce. At the inaugural Olympic Games in Athens in 1896, the first marathon race was designed to recreate Philippides’ mythic route, a distance of roughly 40 kilometres. This initial stretch provided a guideline for subsequent Olympic marathons, though varying local conditions in each host city altered the exact length of the course. In London in 1908, the race was slightly longer, measuring 42.195 kilometres. In 1921, the International Amateur Athletics Federation, discerning the need for an enforceable standard, deferred to the London model, though the reasoning behind this decision is not entirely known.

Embracing a long lineage of creative investigation of the arbitrary nature of the standard, the artists shown in Marathon approach systems and models by way of the incidental or inconstant, revealing idiosyncrasies within the seemingly self-evident. While some artists intervene within preexisting orders, altering our perception of them, others devise their own personal cosmologies, which oscillate between uniformity and particularity.

In both a wall-mounted and freestanding kinetic sculpture, Alois Kronschlaeger appropriates the reticulated geometry of the grid, the formal matrix used in the organization of space. In Kronschlaeger’s work, however, the grid appears absent of its usual austerity, rendered instead as a succession of alternating hues and tones which shift with the movement of the viewer. Working with standard-sized sheets of aluminum, David Rodríguez Caballero methodically folds, files, and enamels the planes of his chosen medium, sensitizing its surfaces and allowing light to emerge as a sculptural material. The resulting pair of wall sculptures, one red and one blue, play with the expected sensorial qualities of aluminum, disrupting its usual reflectivity and coolness. In a series of prints on metal, Andrés Ramírez Gaviria depicts a platinum alloy prototype whose mass corresponds to a single kilogram unit, revealing the increasingly obsolete material substrates of the International System of Units. And in a work on canvas, the artist reproduces an image from a demonstration of the first computer-based drawing program Sketchpad, a precursor to the computer-aided design software used in technical drawing and modeling today.

An arrangement of wooden stakes, marked at varying lengths by irregular bands of color, composes an installation by Silvina Arismendi. Appearing at first like a collection of brightly colored measuring sticks, the work is a decidedly atypical means of calculation: its polychromatic units are organized according to an unknown system and formed by bundles of tightly wrapped plastic string—of the kind used by children to weave bracelets. In a multimedia installation, Pier Stockholm constructs an intricate, self-contained island of wooden planes and electrical cording, plastic drafting tools and fluorescent tubes. And in a large-scale ink drawing on transparent paper, Stockholm establishes a system of vertical and horizontal lines, which vary in tone with the pressure of the hand—each line a distinct and unrepeatable record of the artist’s gesture and breath. Alexis Zambrano presents a sculpture topped by a bronze figurine, produced using 3D scans of the artist practicing gymnastics routines in a vintage swimming suit. In Zambrano’s process, the individual is replicated into a system of serials, though the figure itself is displayed here alone.

Taken together, the works shown in Marathon emphasise the individual within the system and the human within the standard, drawing attention to the fact that within contingency lies the potential for change.

Arismendi's body of works is a result of unrelenting research of materials and supplies. In an almost casual and brief gesture, she transforms a myriad of objects, gathered from everyday life, and compiles them into different arrangements and situations. She attempts to give order by measuring her time, her work and the possibilities with certain materials and objects – obsessive repetition provides coined systems unique to her alone. The work reveals in itself the process of its making, its failure or triumph.

In 2000, she received a scholarship to study in the Czech Republic, graduating from the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague in 2007. Since 2003, she has exhibited in many European cities, as well as in Latin America. In 2007 she founded galería parásito/, which is a platform for for the cultural exchange between Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe. In 2016, she won 2nd place at the 57th Visual Arts National Price, Octavio Podesta, in Uruguay. She also participated in 'The Third Mind' a group exhibition presented at the National Gallery as well as a solo exhibition titled 'Quilted Calico' a solo show at Galerie Berlinskej in Prague, Czech Republic. Arismendi currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Alois Kronschlaeger was born in 1966 in Grieskirchen, Austria. He holds an MFA from The School of Visual Arts, and a BA from Empire State College. Kronschlaeger is best known for his site-specific installations and sculptures, which demonstrate a preoccupation with environment and light, as well as an interest in exploring time and space via geometry. His work has been exhibited internationally at institutions including the Bruce Museum (CT), the Yuan Art Museum (Beijing) and Moca Tucson (AZ), where his installation Untitled (Basin and Range) took over the Great Hall of the museum. Since 2011, the artist has produced three site-specific installations with Site:Lab in Grand Rapids, MI, including Spire, which stretched over three stories tall, and Habitat which was staged in the former Grand Rapids Public Museum. Most recently, he created "Hybrid Structures" in collaboration with Paul Amenta and Tedd Lott as part of the Rumsey Street Project. Kronschlaeger also partnered with Site:Lab to create the special installation "30 Degrees" in Miami, FL. During 2016, Kronschlaeger will participate in the inaugural exhibition of Peana Projects in Monterrey, Mexico; the Islamic Arts Festival at the Sharjah Museum of Art in the United Arab Emirates, and the Special Projects sector at Untitled Art Fair Miami, where he will produce another version of "Hybrid Structures" in collaboration with Paul Amenta and Tedd Lott. He lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

The work of Andres Ramirez Gaviria borrows cultural references from the histories of art, design, science and technology, reconfiguring them through methodologies that imagine alternative modes of perception and thought. Informed by processes of translation and transference, Gaviria's work emphasizes moments of discord and dialogue between and experiential notion of the contemporary and the constantly changing perspectives of historical references.

Gaviria's work has been exhibited internationally in the Kunsthaus Graz, Kunsthaus Dresden; BA-CA Kunstforum and Bawag Contemporary, Vienna; Ar/Ge Kunst, Italy; Caribbean Biennial and Museum of Modern Art, Santo Domingo; Museo de Arte del Banco de la Republica, Bogota; La Casa Encendida, Madrid; and Sonambiente and Transmediale, Berlin, among others. He has been an artist-in-residence at the MuseumsQuartier, Vienna and at the International Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP) in New York. He was also the recipient of the Transmediale.06 Award and his book, Between Forms of Representation and Interpretation, was published by Onomatopee in 2012. His writing has appeared in Flash Art Interntional, Leonardo, #Errata, among others. Together with Norbert Pfaffenbichlex and Franz Gebetsberger in 2014, he co-founded Sigmund, a non-profit exhibition in Vienna.

Andres Ramirez Gaviria studied media theory at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and earned a BFA from Boston University and an MA from the University of Southhampton. He currently lives and works in Vienna.

David Rodriguez Caballero (b.1970), Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of the Basque Country (awarded in 1955), has lived in New York since 2011. The work of Rodriguez Caballero has been exhibited in galleries, museums and public institutions all over the world, including the Moscow Museum of Modern Art (Russia), Wurth Museum in La Rioja (Spain), the Museum of Navarra (Spain), the Oteiza Foundation Museum (Spain) and other institutions across Europe and in Monaco, Miami and New York (US). In 2012, Marlborough Gallery New York organized David's first solo exhibition in Manhattan, entitled Recent Works. Rodriguez Caballero has participated in major art fairs around the globe, such as Art Basel Miami and Art Basel Hong Kong, Kiaf in Seoul and the Armory Show in New York. In addition, he has been awarded the First International "Bodegas Dinastia Vivanco" Engraving Award (La Rioja Spain, 2008), First Prize of IX Mostra Collection Union Fenosa (Union Fenosa Museum of Contemporary Art, Spain, 2006), Volksbank Paderborn First Price in Painting (Paderborn, Germany, 1996) and Pamplona Young Artists First Prize in Painting (Pamplona, Spain, 1995), among others. His work can be found in multiple international collections, such as Repsol, Coca Cola Foundation, the Wurth Museum (La Rioja), Dinastia Vivanco Museum of Wine Culture, Union Fenosa Museum of Contemporary Art (Macuf), Patio Herreriano Museum, the National Library of Spain, the Town Hall of Pamplona, the Palace of the Popes (Viterbo, Italy), the Volksbank Foundation (Paderborn, Germany), the Museum of Navarra, the National Insitute of Statistic (Spain) and ISE Cultural Foundation (New York / Tokyo). In the last few years, David has had several monographic books published. The first one, Cinco Maneras-- written by the IVAM curator Marta Arroyo handprinted by the Town Council of Pamplona on the occasion of his exhibition Ciudadela in Pamplona--, introduces the five lines of his work created between 1998 and 2006: perspex, aluminum, origami, vinyl, and enamel. The second one, Conversaciones con artistas navarros: David Rodriguez Caballero--published by the regional government of Navarra--,complies this sculptor's artistic career through and extensive graphic display of his work structured around the narrative thread of conversations conducted by Kosme de Barano, Professor of Art History.

The work of Pier Stockholm is on the one hand quite formal, on the other hand he embeds private thoughts and obsessions and subjective stories that boil down to the drama of life. Art is about endurance, about losing faith and rediscovering it. The artist likes personal stories and references and tries to slip them in his work. Over the years Stockholm has developed his own distinct vocabulary. Many of the tools and materials he uses refer to his studio practice. His work often starts with a rule that he sets himself or by drawing a geometric diagram, a colour chart or another existing system. Working on them allows unexpected things to happen. He believes the unexpected is essential for creativity. The artist is keen on universal systems like measurements, scales, and colour charts. He also relies on a large repository of references like (modernist) architecture, history, design, patterns, diagrams, scale, rituals, classification, icons and ornaments.

After studying architecture in Lima he moved to São Paulo to do a Masters in Fine Art at the Universidad De Sao Paulo (USP) specialising in “Poeticas Visuais” at the “Escola de Artes e Comunicações” (ECA). After living for 5 years in Sao Paulo he moved to Paris to continue his studies thanks to a grant from Ecole des Beaux arts de Paris (ENSBA) under the Post Master program, “La seine” .

Pier Stockholm has exhibited in institutions and art spaces such as Paço das Artes (Sao Paulo), De Vleeshal (Middleburg), Casino (Luxembourg), and Espace Paul Ricard (Paris). He has participated in numerous residences such as Soart in Carinthia, Cité des Arts in Paris, Mongin studios in Seoul, NID in Ahmedabad among others. In 2014 his artist's book "The weight of References" was published by Onestar Press, Paris. Stockholm currently lives and works in Paris.

Originally from Monterrey, Mexico, Alexis Zambrano awakened an early interest in art through collecting. His interest soon grew into a life-long passion for not only collecting but also for creating it. By age twelve, Alexis fully immersed himself into the art world and started apprenticing with artists Aldo Chaparro, Juan Torres and Ximena Subercasauz while living in Mexico. Zambrano followed with a BFA in Architectural Design from Parsons the New School for Design, and has made New York City his home since 2008. In his first solo exhibition, Interior Artscapes, Alexis showcases his art by curating a series of pieces that compromises his ideal collections.

Through a process that begins by collaging images from auction house catalogues and juxtaposing them in old European salons, the artist then paints his unique vision of collections that otherwise could never be enjoyed.

His work is part of the Fundacion Ama (Chile) and Mauricio Fernandez Collection (Mexico). Zambrano currently lives and works in New York City.