Nicholas Gottlund

Nicholas Gottlund - Living - MELK Oslo

May 15 – June 13 2015

The photograph becomes a book, the book’s making informs the sculpture, the sculpture and photograph become an exhibition.

MELK is proud to present the first exhibition in Scandinavia by Los Angeles based artist Nicholas Gottlund.

The series of photographs compose a book, the book making process informs the sculptures, the sculptures and photographs compose the exhibition.

The color bar sculptures are called Spanners. Strictly speaking they are book cloth wrapped and glued around a thin aluminum bar.

The colors in each of the individual sculptures are set up in a way so that they can be read from left to right or from right to left. What happens within each sculpture is that when two pieces of cloth meet (in that juncture of color) one can often observe a run off or a series of little white tips from the underlying thread, which read as a series of dots. The colors at the end of each piece may be imagined to bleed off the edge and run into a non–printed space.

If we expand the idea of treating the wall like the page connecting it more broadly to the notion of the focal point versus the periphery, then by hanging something very low on the wall in addition to something that is centered to the height of the eye, all points are given equal weight and value. Imagery and white space coalesce into a unified enlargement.

Though Gottlund has created nearly 40 Spanners in his Los Angeles studio, the pieces in this exhibition were made in situ.

By working with one type of book cloth and in a limited range of color the role of repetition or lack thereof has been brought to the forefront. What he finds most satisfying is working with the pieces as a whole installation or body of work, rather than individual artworks. The repeat and rhythm of the colors across the linear border that the pieces create relates back to the cadence and timing within the printing process. When the repeat is interrupted, broken or adjusted he finds the pieces become the most engaging. Those skips, breaks and anomalies align the work less with the original ideas associated with mechanical reproduction and more with the hand and experimentation. It is this mutability within an otherwise rigid system that Gottlund finds the most exciting.

Nicholas Gottlund - 10 West, 2013, C-print, 30x22 cm image, 30x25 cm sheet, edition of 5
Nicholas Gottlund – 10 West, 2013, C-print, 30×22 cm image, 30×25 cm sheet, edition of 5

Nicholas Gottlund (b. 1981 Kutztown, P.A.) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. He received his BFA from M.I.C.A. Baltimore in 2004 and founded Gottlund Verlag in 2007. His work has been shown through solo exhibitions at Art Metropole, Toronto; Working Title, Toronto; PLHK, Chicago; Temple Gallery, Paris; Karma, New York; Contemporary Museum, Baltimore; Capricious, New York and Bodega, Philadelphia. Selected group exhibitions include Human Resources, Los Angeles; Foam Photography Museum, Amsterdam; Otras Obras, Tijuana and Open Space, Baltimore. Gottlund has published several publications under the publishing house Gottlund Verlag. This is the artists first exhibition in Scandinavia.

The exhibition is supported by the Arts Council Norway. Arts Council Norway