Hashtag Abstract at the Ronchini Gallery
Hashtag Abstract is a new group exhibition on show at the Ronchini Gallery that addresses the cultural implications of a progressively digital age. Featuring work from international artists Oliver Clegg, Richard Höglund, Christopher Kuhn and Kasper Sonne, the collection explores how free communication, mass media and individual judgement affect the growth of trends, and the circulation and mutation of language and news.
Naturally, the four artists are drawn to the power of the image as a means of communication, and each one translates the influence of the digital world into a unique pictorial format, made all the more explicit by the juxtaposition of the artworks. No two are similar in style, but they all share an ideological currency that is centred on themes of distortion and imperfection. As a result, there is a strong sense of disunity when they are viewed in conjunction. Rigid fonts are overplayed with thick, unrestrained arcs of colour. Consistently neat pictures are mutilated by an attack of contrasting technique, and the use of silence as a valuable expression is seen in the combination of open colour with small yet striking markings. Coherency is blended wonderfully and naturally with incoherency, whilst the organic is presented as something disjunctive yet beautiful. In this way, the artists have captured the growth of the digital world, particularly grasping its unpredictability and flippancy.
Hashtag Abstract is a pioneering exhibition, which uses the competition of a digital reality to its advantage. Multiplicity of ideas, and the disruption and confusion of concepts that the Internet habituates, are all used to the artists’ advantage, which is a refreshing take on the conflict between virtual and manual craft. Curator Kamiar Maleki has executed this feat to great effect by grouping together such boldly different artists. This complements the digital overtone to the exhibition, mimicking the diversity, range and accessibility that is found in one place, side-by-side, on the Internet.
Hashtag Abstract is at the Ronchini Gallery from 1st July until 29th August 2015, for further information visit here.