São PauloMimi Lauter: Après nous le déluge
Mendes Wood DM São Paulo presents Mimi Lauter’s first solo exhibition in Brazil. The show brings together recent paintings in oil bar on paper in the North and South Rooms. Lauter’s research extract from different mythologies, literature, and historical events the character of the relations between image and existence. In addition to referring to the history of painting, especially the period between 1886 and 1905, the artist provokes the aesthetic foundation for psychological issues.
Phlegethon is the name given to one of Hades’s rivers. It also appears in Dante’s DivineComedy in the 7th Circle of Hell, in the 1st Valley, where the violent people drowned in the river of boiling blood. The more serious the crime, the greater the immersed part. As the function of this river was to torture souls, it had to preserve them, so that it could torture them any longer. However, for this, the river possessed healing waters, becoming known as Healing River.
This dichotomous relation of life and death, ruin and origin, is the pretext that lies amid abstraction and figuration in Mimi Lauter’s drawings, as well as the association of the repetition of history or the history of art itself, through the representational structure of allegory while the work evokes the post-impressionists. The visceral bodies that draw from the oily pastel on the paper in saturated colors exercise a process of vitality and at the same time, the rupture of the form.
The exhibition presents a world drowned by a flood, concerning liquid destruction, a destruction that is also given by a vital element, water, as if our source of life were also our destruction. The musicality also presents itself in the show in a peculiar way, through the mythological narrative of Orpheus and Eurydice. In one of the versions of the myth, is crossing Phlegethon that Eurydice stumbles and calls the name of Orpheus, that when looking back breaks the deal made with Hades and thus loses his love forever, therefore composing the saddest song ever heard in all possible worlds. This relation between rhythm and form can develop new ways to arrange images and ideas in a sense whom breaks the chronology and limits of life and death of these images.
Lauter’s painting happens in the form but expands in paradoxes, in mythologies, and especially in the sense of uncertainty. She questions the possibilities of the image through the story behind it, at the same time that it delivers a vision, itself takes of the viewer. Decode, it is almost like stepping on a minefield or how to provoke a deluge of ideas about what the image is.
Mimi Lauter (1982, San Francisco) lives and works in Los Angeles, USA.
Her solo exhibitions include Sensus Oxynation, Blum & Poe, Los Angeles (2018); Miniatures, Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago (2018); Devotional Flowers, Derek Eller Gallery, New York (2018); Interiors, Tif Sigfrids, Los Angeles (2017); A Carnival of Musical Echo, Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago (2015).
Her works have been part of group exhibitions including Selections from the Marciano Collection, Marciano Art Foundation, Los Angeles (2019); Art for Art’s Sake: Selections from the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, Carnegie Art Museum, Oxnard (2016); Paper in Practice; Made in L.A. 2012, organized by the Hammer Museum in collaboration with LAXART, Los Angeles (2012).all images © the gallery and the artist(s)