15 August 2018 [Translation] The first solo show by Oren Pinhassi, in the UK is at Edel Assanti. Set in a large, well lit ground-gallery, 'Second Nature' encompasses twelve works subverting outdoor and indoor categories, in a visceral re-enactment of transforming social ambiances. Pinhassi was born in Tel Aviv in 1985 and is currently based in New York. He graduated from Yale University's School of Art M.F.A. (2014). On 19 May, Pinhassi’s recent solo exhibition closed at Skibum MacArthur (titled “One in the Mouth and one in the Heart”). There, the trembling landscape he recreated today recalls 'Second Nature’s' aesthetic atmosphere. Between a public space and a touching memory, both the exhibitions confront our notions of the salacious and taboos, the social mores and religious dogma that shape our reactions. Phantasmal pavilions we often construct to house and hide our desires and, at times, our shame.
In 'Second Nature', Pinhassi continues to create is abstracted renditions of gay cruising spots, from bathhouses to parks. Pinhassi, melting anthropomorphic structures together with urban architecture, tries to nullify any codified opposition between privacy and curiosity, between reality and its inner representation, between transgression and guilt.
In the architectural spaces, both physical and psychological, a pavilions’ glass walls are rendered opaque by the artist’s application of Vaseline in repetitive, painterly gestures. Frozen light-green palm trees ('One in the Mouth and One in the Heart I', 2018) allows the visitor to remain imprinted by the fantastical, corporal allure of Pinhassi's artificial gaze on Nature. Reclining chairs are personified, mimicking limbs and body language in their configuration. Serpentine towels are curled up on the floor – twisted and used, now hardened by the application of plaster.
Where bodily forms, at first glimpse, seem absent, the body’s presence is suggsted by the scale or implied practical use of the structures. Smaller pergolas evoke tropical vegetation in their green colour and seemingly organic form, yet their rigidity suggests they too have some non-prescriptive purpose. Two glasses are attached to each of these umbrella-like trees, one at hand-held height and the other at genital height as a kind of memento. Orifices are disseminated throughout the exhibition, overtly gaping from pink burlap coated in plaster and hanging from a towel rack. Whilst the exhibition is sprinkled by sculptures, the relationship between physical environment, behaviour and remembrance emerges as the primary subject of Pinhassi’s analysis.
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