Owen SchuhAccumulations: Drawings & Notebooks
January 24 - February 23
Opening reception Friday, January 24, 6-9pm
Schema Project is pleased to present the first exhibition devoted to Owen Schuh’s works on paper.
Schuh describes his dense and delicate works as “seeking to illuminate the entwining relations between embodied mind, mathematics, and the physical world.” Mapped out on sheets of stained or darkened paper, his delicate geometric figurations unfold across the surface and express his concentration as their glow emanates and draws us in.
Through research, he chooses mathematical functions that model the interactions and structure of living systems. Cellular automata, circle packing, fractals, and other topics in discrete mathematics form the basis of these systems. These “functions” bear the structure of life, but operate in the parallel world of the mind: a world of simulacra inhabited by numbers and abstract relationships.
The structure of the work is handcrafted using, at most, the aid of a pocket calculator. In each piece, he strives to manifest phenomena unique to the interaction between the physical medium and the logical structure. As Schuh describes, “the mathematical formula is a virus that depends on a host to carry out its peculiar kind of life until it terminates or the medium or the artist is exhausted.” In the end, the drawing is really only the physical trace of this activity—in this case, like a shimmering shell left behind on the beach.
Owen Schuh (born 1982, in Stevens Point, Wisconsin) lives and works in San Francisco. Initially pursuing biology, Schuh earned a degree in Fine Arts and Philosophy from Haverford College and an MFA from The Tyler School of Art, in Philadelphia, and Rome, Italy. He has exhibited nationally and internationally and lectures periodically on his work and algorithmic art practice. His work is included in the Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. He recently completed a two year residency at the San Francisco artist collective Root Division, where he taught after school classes in origami to under-served public school students.
The work of Rachael Wren navigates the territory between the geometric and the organic. In this collection of work, not unlike the “Ideal Cities” of Renaissance artists, she creates an “Ideal Forest”. On a grid that maps out the forest floor, ribbon-like verticals sprout upward, suggesting a logical space. This “personal wood”, achieves a sense of air and space through the use of traditional atmospheric perspective.
However, the entire monochromatic environment seems vulnerable, as it might collapse at any moment, soft yet strong, in it’s combination of thin ruled line and pale grays. Using these sparest of means, Wren's drawings explore the universal duality between two and three-dimensional form, structure and randomness, and the known and the unknown.
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