November 21, 2008 - January 10, 2009
Opening Reception: Thursday, November 21, 2008
Chris Hammerlein’s personal cosmology is revealed in a new series of finely modeled ceramic sculptures. Intimate in scale and saturated with multi-hued glazes, Hammerlein’s work is informed by myth, religion, and art history. He confronts eternal human dramas (i.e., love, sex, death), as well as the prospect of apocalypse and the endurance of art in the face of life’s brevity. In one work, a male and female figure locked in an urgent embrace stand upon a mound, gazing out with looks of horror and despair. In another, three nude female figures lounge within the crevices of a rocky outcropping like the seductive Sirens of Greek myth. Visual references to Meso-American Chac Mools and African and Papua New Guinean tribal art co-exist with the Romanesque sculptures of Autun Cathedral, Joachim Kaendler’s Meissen, and French Art Nouveau. Lyrical and at times jarring in their humor, these sculptures possess all the formal and emotional strengths of Hammerlein’s drawings, both in their directness and complexity.
Chris Hammerlein’s work has appeared in numerous exhibitions throughout the United States, Europe, and Mexico including exhibitions at the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, Mexico and Fundacion ICO, Madrid, Spain. His work is part of the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, NY, and the Walker Art Center, MN. This will be his fifth solo exhibition with the gallery.
Derek Eller Gallery is located at 615 West 27th Street, between 11th and 12th Avenues. Hours are Tuesday - Saturday from 11am - 6pm. For further information or visuals, please contact the gallery at 212.206.6411 or visit www.derekeller.com