Simon Lee Gallery is delighted to present the first UK exhibition by the Texas and New York-based artist, Jeff Elrod (b. 1966). Following an acclaimed exhibition at MoMA P.S.1 in New York earlier this year, Elrod will be showing a new body of large-scale abstract paintings concerned with the relationship between hand-painted and digitally created mark-making.
His practice is informed by the trajectory of late twentieth century abstraction and the emergence of sophisticated software and print technology. Many of his works are hybrid images which incorporate what he terms ‘analogue’ techniques using acrylic, tape, and spray paint, and ‘frictionless’ digital drawings that originate using familiar programs such as Illustrator and Photoshop. The resulting paintings are characterised by shifts between flat planes of colour and an illusory depth.
A second series of works – the Echo paintings - are produced from hard-edged digital drawings which Elrod transforms into blurred images using Photoshop. They are then printed in UV ink on canvas. Inspired by Brion Gysin and William Burrough’s self-hypnotising Dream Machine, Elrod’s paintings consist of indistinct blotches of two and three-tone colour spread across the painting field. Their pronounced retinal effect is a result of a digital process which un-focuses his dense geometric computer drawings until the skeleton of the image dissolves and a new presence emerges. What begin as hard-edged Jackson Pollock webs on screen are transformed into amorphous clouds of colour. Without a focal point to anchor the image, the visual field of these works resists coherence and the space, shape and lines from the artist’s original drawings are lost and re-presented as a newly churned abstraction.
Jeff Elrod (b. 1966) lives and works between Marfa, Texas and Brooklyn, New York. He has participated in residency fellowships at the Chinati Foundation in Marfa (1998) and the Rijksakademie Van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (1993). Major recent solo exhibitions include Nobody Sees Like Us at MoMA P.S. 1 in Long Island City, New York (2013) and Focus: Jeff Elrod at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth in Texas (2009). Elrod has been nominated for the 2013 Rob Pruitt Art Award in two categories: Artist of the Year and Solo Show of the Year.