A Life of its Own
02/06 - 27/07
Lulu is proud to present a two-part solo exhibition of the Texas-born, New York-based painter Michael Berryhill. This will be Berryhill’s first monographic exhibition in Belgium.
Michael Berryhill is a painter who has been developing his own pictorial language for more than two decades. Thoroughly and organically balanced, his language is a crucible of color, imagery and technique. No single element can be removed without undermining the whole of what he makes. This is because the genesis of his vibrant, high-contrast imagery is indivisible from the application of his paint, whose dense building up, scumbling, and rubbing away create a sense of erosion as much as accrual. Although motifs often come from drawings, the imagery in his pictures is always a negotiation of what the painting wants, and is, as such, generated organically. This is why imagery is liable to fluctuate between figuration and abstraction, some times within the same painting, and why the work apparently dallies with process, but is not necessarily about process, or process-based abjurations of authorship. Berryhill is unmistakably the author of his works. And yet, like strange biological entities, they seem to not only possess a life that is entirely their own, but to be in a state of continual becoming or evolution. This is a byproduct of their dense, labored surfaces and their bright, preternaturally high-contrast palettes, which mutually give the impression of a surface inhabited by some kind of infusorial life form or a phosphorescent fungus. As such, his pictures lead you to suspect that they might change or evolve from one viewing to the next. They seem to exist, or be capable of existing independently of a viewer (which becomes an interesting argument for that old bugbear autonomy)– a position that has a lot less to do with denying the viewer than affirming painting, which possesses a life of its own.
For the first part of Michael Berryhill’s exhibition, the artist will present a selection of “drawings” made over the course of the past five years. The second part of the show, featuring paintings, will inaugurate on Sunday, June 23rd.
Michael Berryhill (b 1972, El Paso, Texas) lives and works in New York. A selection of recent solo exhibitions include: (2017) a window, adore, Kate Werble Gallery, New York, NY; primitive.is.him, Galería Marta Cervera, Madrid, ES; (2016) Loony Tombs, Night Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. A selection of recent group exhibitions includes: (2018) Heat Brain, Derek Eller Gallery, New York, NY; Line and Verse, Andréhn-Schiptjenko, Stockholm, SE; (2017) Symbolisms, Cooper Cole, Toronto, ON; Pictography, Sperone Westwater, New York, NY; (2016) Go Figure, Van Doren Waxter, New York, NY; As if in a foreign country, Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder, Vienna, Austria; The Clear and the Obscure, Lulu, Mexico City, Mexico; Strange Abstraction, Fredericks & Freiser, New York, NY. He is currently preparing a solo exhibition at Night Gallery and his work will be featured in City Princess/es at the Palais de Tokyo, opening June 2019.