Mackin Projects and Site 57 are pleased to present Surface Tension, a solo exhibition by New York artist Michael Zelehoski, who is known for deconstructing and recontextualizing found objects into two and three-dimensional space. In this new body of work, Zelehoski explores the relationship between mind and reality by situating familiar objects in unexpected contexts and configurations. The resulting works are contradictory in nature, simultaneously representing the immutability of the physical world and the uncertainty of our perception of it.
Under constant bombardment of perceptual information, our minds respond by seeking and often imposing concept and narrative. These mental structures give order and coherence to an uncertain world but may also constitute an impediment to seeing it clearly. Throughout history, artists and architects have employed visual or optical misperceptions to bring this to our attention. Zelehoski’s intention is not to create an illusion, but to reaffirm the reality of the physical while challenging the way we see it. His selective and abstractive process is not so different from the creative process that is perception. His achievement lies in making that process visible.
The works in Surface Tension oscillate between loosely abstract and tautly symmetrical, utilizing steel cable, structural pipe and even fluorescent light as graphic tools. The gallery is divided by a large-scale immersive structure that requires the viewer to traverse a constructed reality that is seemingly ready to collapse at any moment. Zelehoski doesn't emphasize concept or employ explicit narrative. He simply presents the material evidence in the artificial context of the picture plane. As a result, the show resonates with the current moment without explicitly addressing it.
Michael Zelehoski lives and works in Beacon, New York. His work resides in private and public collections around the world, most notably in The Musée National d'Art Moderne - Centre Pompidou in Paris, which acquired his 40 ft. piece Open House in the spring of 2015. Recent solo exhibitions include Object Permanence, Backslash Gallery, Paris, France (2016), New Order, Mike Weiss Gallery, NY (2015) and Secondary Structures, DODGE Gallery, NY (2012). Zelehoski has received numerous awards; from the Staten Island Museum and the Massachusetts Cultural Council among others. He has been reviewed by The New York Times’ T Magazine, ARTnews, Hyperallergic, Design Milk, and World Sculpture News, among many others. Upcoming exhibitions include a solo exhibition with Tang Contemporary in Hong Kong and an installation at Spring Break art fair, March 2017. Zelehoski is represented by Backslash Gallery, Paris.