10.26 — 12.06.14
Pure Pictures, Perfect Prints
October 26 – December 6, 2014
Opening reception: Sunday, October 26, 4 – 7 p.m.
When a leaf falls from a tree it ceases to be part of its source; it lays, dispersed among hundreds of other now detached leaves to be selected, picked up or raked away. Imagine that fallen leaf digitally reproduced. It now becomes part of something different, greater; something connected to virtually trillions of other digital representations of leaves all floating through the Internet. That digital representation of a leaf was a depiction of a real leaf; it’s now being used by Aron Gent, transferred to a piece of paper to become, yet again, a new representation, a completely different leaf. Imagine if that leaf came to this exhibition. Would it still recognize itself? In this new body of work, Aron Gent’s Pure Pictures, Perfect Prints ruminates on that mirroring process, continually pulling out and circling back to the “leaves” that fall through his image and material universe.
In his first solo exhibition with devening projects + editions, Aron Gent addresses the material and process of his work as a professional photographic printer. Although that process incorporates state of the art technology, his most recent project reflects on the discontinuation of Polaroid film and the Polaroid image transfers that were first made by artists in the 1970s and subsequently explored throughout the history of photography. These prints embrace appropriation; removing the camera entirely from the process to be replaced with digital mark making and digital collage. Structuring the work around found imagery, clip art and other abstracted digital fragments, Gent reassigns and transforms those images by transferring them onto watercolor paper using archival pigment ink. Surprising things occur during that process. The images lose specificity but gain mystery, nuance and narrative possibilities unlikely in the originals. The result is a jump occurring when an image moves out of its world, is radically transformed, but still reflects something of itself and its history.
(b. 1985) Aron Gent is an artist, gallerist and professional print-maker living in Chicago, IL. He received a degree from Columbia College Chicago and has been a lecturer and instructor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, the Hyde Park Art Center and Columbia College Chicago. Gent is a co-founder of MDW Fair, Director/Founder of the printing/exhibition space DOCUMENT and a board member for the ACRE Residency. Gent’s work is in the collection of the Milwaukee Art Museum and has been exhibited at the Hyde Park Art Center, Addison Gallery of American Art, Weatherspoon Art Museum, Chicago Cultural Center, Institute of Contemporary Arts Singapore and the Kohler Arts Center.