The Arts Club is delighted to announce the first UK solo exhibition of Kasper Sonne, who presents a series of four new, large-scale paintings from his TXC series. Based in Brooklyn, Danish artist Sonne has exhibited internationally, recently at SALTS in Basel and Palais de Tokyo in Paris.
In this critically acclaimed series, Sonne uses toxic solvents to create vibrant abstract paintings. First applying industrial paint to his canvasses with a roller, Sonne creates an immaculate plane of colour. He then pours layers of chemical solvents over the canvas surface. With the introduction of toxic chemicals, the pigments of the painted surface undergo radical colour transformation, and, once dry, produce tiny, glittering crystals across areas of the work surface. As the materials react, ghostly layers of splayed colour expand across the once pristinely smooth surface.
By allowing the chemicals to move autonomously across the painted surface, Sonne relinquishes full control over the design of his work. Inherent in the work is a tension between chance and control, and creation and destruction. Sonne embraces these oppositions, as he explains: “It’s not about the one or the other, but it’s actually the conflict between the two. It’s that space between these two certainties that I’m interested in, and letting the viewer define that meaning for themselves.”
The chemical reactions seen in the TXC series evoke Yves Klein’s 1960s Fire Paintings and Andy Warhol’s Oxidisation Paintings of the late 1970s. Klein, in his infamous series, painted by means of fire imprints, using an industrial blowtorch to burn abstract forms into specially treated cardboard. Warhol’s first forays into abstraction saw him combining metallic green-gold pigments with his own urine, the uric acid oxidising the metal in the copper ground, causing discolouration. Sonne brings this alchemic approach to abstraction to a contemporary audience, turning it on its head. Whereas Warhol championed the industrial application of paint, Sonne undermines the perfectly monochromatic painting.
The exhibition is curated by Pernilla Holmes and Amelie von Wedel of Wedel Art Advisory. Both the Arts Club and the curators warmly thank Kasper for his work and enthusiasm in creating this show.