Robert Waters "Man"

Mizuma Action

poster for Robert Waters "Man"

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Mizuma Art Gallery is delighted to announce the first solo exhibition in Asia of controversial Canadian artist Robert Waters.
Roberts Waters' art is a study of our ongoing evolution in post-industrial society. Focusing on changing social structures, his artworks examine human domestication while exploring the essence of the human biological make up and our desire to transcend them, concentrating on perceived divisions of body and mind, and concepts of control and freedom.

Comprised of installations and drawing series, his projects investigate the human nature and body through themes of male sexuality, violence and mortality. They are made using familiar materials that specifically reference their visual content, emphasizing connections between formal and conceptual considerations. In exploring personal and social themes his projects embody political motives in defense of difference towards equality. Presenting the human body as a site of political action, Waters aims to provoke a questioning of self-knowledge and social control.

Waters' provocative representation of masculinity and unusual choice of materials have been a defining feature of his work and earned him international recognition.
His ongoing drawing series Clean Up Your Act You Dirty Faggots, for example, portrays gay pornographic images made with bleach and iodine on paper. Over time, the iodine fades completely away, and the bleach corrodes through the paper. The images are taken from gay pornography from the 1970's, before the onset of HIV/AIDS and are a ghostly memorial to sickness and loss, and an awkward collision of gay rights and the sterilization of sex.

In this show, Waters is presenting drawings from 2003, 2005 and new ones painted specifically for this exhibition, to showcase the deterioration of the images over time. His series of installations Man at Computer, presented before in various locations in Europe, North America and Mexico, investigates our growing intimacy with technology by bringing a private, common scene into the public realm. The series documents the physical relationships of men alone at night in the glow of their computers, alluding both to sexual exploration and erotic alienation. The series is executed with brown packing tape applied directly to the wall using labour-intensive cutting techniques to reveal the wall underneath.

A new series Killing San Sebastian is featuring a life-size drawing of San Sebastian that is "completed" in the gallery by being shot at with bows and arrows. The drawing is based on famous paintings and sculptures of the Christian martyr, executed on a traditional archery target. The large-scale drawing will be accompanied by small preparatory drawings, hung in a grid, which examines the male body and the expression of religious ecstasy associated with San Sebastian.

Curated by Shai Ohayon, the exhibition "MAN" will expose contradictory expressions of masculinity in contemporary society. In an attempt to understand the conflicted relationship between sexuality and violence, "MAN" will feature distinct projects in various media; installations (Man at Computer, Target That Won’t Feel A Thing), a video (Learning to Care/Learning Not to Care), a performance (Killing San Sebastian) and several drawing series (Clean Up Your Act You Dirty Faggots, Are You a Body or Do You Have a Body, and Jungle Gym).

Image: Robert Waters "MaC (Artium, 2008)"

Media

Schedule

From 2010-07-14 To 2010-08-14

Artist(s)

Robert Waters

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Reviews

Marcus Bird tablog review

Behold the Man

An exhibition by Robert Waters examines pain, Saint Sebastian and alienation.

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