Layers for a Brain Corner
May 21–August 12, 2016

300 South Mission Road, Los Angeles

Maccarone is proud to present Layers for a Brain Corner, its fourth exhibition with London-born, New York-based artist Paul Lee.

With origins in film and photography, Lee’s work spans sculpture, painting, video, and collage, employing a cohesive language of signature materials (such as towels, tambourines, cans, and light bulbs) to create subtle constructions. Born out of narratives surrounding personal interaction, the work necessitates an inward dialogue with a collective past. Using spontaneous variations and improvisational repetitions, the artist conjures the trope of human desire, moving into an evolving psychic and physical space. For his first showing at Maccarone’s Los Angeles space, Lee continues his exploration of the body presenting two new distinct bodies of work — “touch paintings” and “towel negatives.”

Lee’s touch paintings mark a new direction, as his tambourine objects are fused with canvases for the first time: works that conflate skin, surface, and intimacy while simultaneously playing with the dynamic relationships of shape, form, and color. The variety of canvas depths and shapes activate the space around the picture plane as the taut surfaces topographically vary, challenging the viewer’s perception of space with their irregular protruding forms.

The new towel negative wall-based sculptures address space through their particular and precise arrangements.  Cut edges of bath towels and washcloths are sewn together, dyed with ink, and repurposed into matrixes that induce narrative associations with the body. The structures made from the square and rectangular units of this familiar material have long been a touchstone of Lee’s practice, and these new works depicting cascades, tumbles, and spills progress such language. Against the white wall, the psychic space may negate the physical, creating both expanding and collapsing frames in which the formal and the personal are invited to exist synchronously.

Paul Lee was born in London in 1974, studied at Winchester School of Art, and lives and works in New York. Recent solo exhibitions include The University of the Arts Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, Philadelphia, Stuart Shave/Modern Art, London, and the Chinati Foundation, Marfa. His work has been included in exhibitions at The Morgan Library & Museum, New York; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Portikus, Frankfurt, Germany; Zabludowicz Collection, LondonWalker Art Center, Minneapolis; and Contemporary Art Museum, St Louis.