Naamak Collective – Atlas
Presented by Britt Ehringer and Marischa Slusarski
Namaak Collective is an internationally renowned art collective that addresses the establishment of new cultural habits since the digital revolution and how these practices change access to works of art.
Namaak Collective was founded in 2009, by Jorg Hendrix of Amsterdam, (known for his humorous approach to formalism) along with Marischa Slusarski and Britt Ehringer of Los Angeles to create art experiences and exhibitions by an international group of artists who share similar motivations & attitudes, producing a different way of insinuating themselves into the world.
The artists participating are not only active in visual arts, but also in music, theatre, performance and printed matter. Together and as individuals, they cultivate the refusal to define their praxis within the confines of the contemporary art field, while striving to create works of art that reflect on the concept of synesthesia; eliciting in the viewer both unfamiliar and involuntary sensory/cognitive experiences.
Namaak Collective has performed and exhibited worldwide, receiving numerous awards and accolades. Their individual and group work is represented in many prestigious private and public collections. Projects include “KunstKräm - Architectural Intervention,” “The Andy Glorhol Project,” “Projections of the Other,” and “Identity Thief - Opernwerkstätten in Berlin-Mitte.”
The twelve artists will took over the exhibition space of Launch LA’s La Brea venue, with a large majority of new works conceived for the exhibition. This is their first show in the United States.
Tak Mufuni - Tokyo Japan
“Tall Drink of Cool” (Blue and Pink)
Enamel, Holographic paint, Pigment, Marine Resin, Led Lighting System
Tak Mufuni’s work is deliberately sexually elusive with a surf-cool vibe in order to question predetermined patterns of thought protocol. Channeling the Tokyo Drift Aesthetic, the definition of Tak’s poetic process hangs between the eccentric and
colorful story of everyday life, and the necessity to mix human characteristics and
geographies, cultures and situations. His tall blond creature with its seamless blue, silver blocking and resin surfaces are offset by an LED lighting system exposing the back painting to create a multi-faceted, interactive trip. Tak is also the creator and star of the incredibly popular online show, “Mufuni Waves.”
Cha Cha Bibiana - São Paolo Brazil
“Mandala No. 3”
Marble Dust, Acrylic on Wood Panel
Originally from the favelas of Sao Paolo, Bibiana’s focus confronts psychosocial
dimensions of self, community, and "immaterial materiality,” using the metaphor
“thin skin.” Her scarification painting sings the mystical language of external and
internal spheres. "No. 3" of her mandala series continues the artistic dialogue highlighting the unwieldy bruising disfigurement of life and its vicious fragilities. In addition to exhibiting in galleries, Bibiana teaches Body Identity Politics at one of Brazil’s largest universities.
Britt Ehringer - Oxnard, CA
“The Magic Christian“
Oil and Spray Enamel on Linen
While spending 10 years in a South Asian prison, Ehringer zeroed in on his craft. Since freedom, he has unleashed the “ultimate idiotropic opus,” a tour de force into multiple dimensions of memory. The triangulated relationship between desire, discipline, and productivity provides the basis for Ehringer’s meditation on sexual difference. These cinematic and sexual references converge in Ehringer’s “Magic Christian” which becomes a leitmotif for the artist’s ongoing exploration of a polymorphous sexuality. His work has been collected by celebrities and art enthusiasts, featured in national and international publications, and has been exhibited in museums and galleries around the world.
"Fred" – Manila Philippines
“Quickly as you can, snatch the pebble from my hand”
3d Printed Sculpture, Paint, Formica, Antique Dollhouse Chair
"Fred" is a group of four young artists all named Fred, living on the streets, homeless by choice. Their wildly entertaining and improvisational performances are seen in all parts of the city. Best known for their guerrilla traffic cone sensor speakers, to Fred, art is anything where the word “creative” has been removed from the realm of achievement and applied to another realm entirely. The above piece is their homage to the death of actor David Carradine.
Kgosi - Johannesburg South Africa
“Soul Defender Punching Bag”
Oil on Canvas, Leather, Thread and Debris
Although known primarily for his “Soundscrapes” – interactive sound art that
seeks to banish preconceived notions of artistic divisions, Kgosi also uses basic
elements of material and pigment (with a touch of magical realism) to create
continuity-storytelling through a series of constructions/breakdowns, in which the
work is simultaneously derivative and original. His rare African movie posters
represented on punching bags combine boyhood fantasies with the explosive and violent oppression of his people in South Africa.
Marischa Slusarski - Venice, CA
“The Weight of the World”
Acrylic on Canvas
Slusarski’s new paintings are informed by her previous photographic dioramas, as well as her classical beast paintings. She works her way through conceptual constructs including the banal and the heavenly, merging themes about predation, genetic modification, infantilism, power dynamics, racial panic, gender ambiguity and western constructs of domination over the "natural." Her work has been exhibited worldwide is represented in many private, public and institutional collections and has been featured in numerous online and print publications.
Pad Sander – Berlin, Germany
“Bar-B-Que Gone Bad”
Mounted Digital Inkjet Print
Pad Sander’s current work is part of his “Conclave” series which began over two
decades ago as a result of a studio fire that destroyed all his abstract multi-media paintings. His new large-scale digital photos operate at the intersection of installation, theatre and performance. “Bar-B-Que Gone Bad,” presents both a hilarious and ghoulish scene. Sander’s motives are shrouded while presenting characters not so carefully described that they suggest an interpretation. A fan of American White Trash Gothic online videos, the subject of his latest diorama is an attempt to elicit uneasiness in the viewer; the backyard BBQ gone wrong. Working with actors, costumes, stage lighting and other special effects, Sander creates a magical oddity of primordial viewing.
Blowmouse – Stockton, CA
Hacker turned artist, Blowmouse, possesses the ability to scan aerial maps and transform them by memory alone, into pixilated mosaics of digital detritus. Each square represents the A and Y-axis of hacked IP codes downloaded from a Wi-Fi device placed upon the gallery roof and then assigned a corresponding color code. Using the surrounding mental snapshot, Blowmouse creates a glimmering jewel-like abstract construct, pixel by pixel. Blowmouse’s formulaic logistics self-assemble, creating a breathtaking juxtaposition between beauty and
infrastructure. The reimagined map becomes an exact copy of the Launch Gallery neighborhood.
Xiang Xong - Shanghai China
Xiang Xong's work explores the ever-shifting human condition using digital “interlacing.” Slicing through such themes such as post-colonial discourse, multi-culturalism and economic and environmental shifts, the power of Xong’s work lies in its ability to confront any viewer with their own position concerning notions such as “nationality,” “identity,” and “ethnicity.” She was recently awarded a residency program in New Guinea.
Vibeke Thorkelson - Fredrikstad Norway
“Tyranny of Authorship” (Series #308 – 317)
2012-2013, Series of nine photos
Lomo Camera Print on Film Stock
Thorkelson is well-known in her native Norway for her ongoing “Tyranny of
Authorship,” series where she travels to airports all over the world and hands
strangers Lomo cameras, and asks them to take pictures of whatever excites them on their travels and send back the camera to her. The resulting nine photos are more than a sum of their parts, becoming rather, the unknown beauty of fortunate mistakes. This opens up a space freed from the tyranny of history and the meaning of authorship, in which lovely, mostly anonymous creations can be viewed on their own terms. Her works have been exhibited in many galleries from Europe to Asia.
Mabel Huitzilihuitl - Guanajuato Mexico
Woven Tapestry Stitched onto Backing with Antique Post-Colonial Frame
Huitzilihuitl shares a peculiar fascination with unstable phantasmagoria and
old-school ectoplasm and she brings these vestiges of the past to her images.
Huitzilihuitl celebrates life with her haunting tapestries in an attempt to encourage visits by the souls, so they will hear the prayers and the comments of the living directed to them. This is her first time exhibiting her work.
Mitchell and Chamberlain – Reykjavik Iceland
Single Channel Video
Run Time: 9 Hrs.
Mitchell and Chamberlain's well-known videos investigate the vague terrain between pre-programming and autonomy, between present development, randomness and boredom, thus delivering surprising insights into the nature of non-teleological processes and a novel understanding of art as a form of prototyping. Their most recent video, “The Latent Touch,” was presented the Golden Column award at this year’s Biennial.
Curtis and Cole Durkee
“Only the Fish Laugh”
Acrylic, Wood Object, Spray paint on Canvas
Conjoined twins, Curtis and Cole’s physical celebrity short-circuits preconceived notions of authorship, and allows the viewer to explore issues concerning the authenticity of artistic creation and the value and utility of art and artistic formulations. “Shackled” together, the brothers present a bewitching opportunity to confront the polarization between the deconstruction and confirmation of collaboration. Their work simultaneously holds together the desire to believe and the desire to doubt. Their first graphic novel “Underwater Photographic Opportunities,” comes out in June.