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Exhibition “Armida and Rinaldo”

Published: May 2, 2024; Author: Julia Sonrisa

 Today until Jul 03, 2024 (Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat)   10:00 AM-06:00 PM EDT

Address: 530 West 25th Street, New York, NY 10001, United States

Phone: +1 206-652-5855

Web: https://seattle.winstonwachter.com/

Exhibition “Armida and Rinaldo”

The series is a reimagining of the legend of Armida and Rinaldo, a 16th-century epic poem set during the First Crusade. Wildly popular at the time, the story inspired countless Baroque artworks, yet this tale has all but vanished from our collective memory today. As the story goes, the sorceress Armida lures Roman soldiers with her charms to neglect their military duty. Armida falls in love with Rinaldo mid-attack, and steals him away to her idyllic garden. In this exhibition, Uhlir embraces the tension between figuration and gestural abstraction to explore age-old themes of love and duty through a modern lens.

In Uhlir’s nuanced exploration, Armida serves as a dynamic symbol of love’s complex power and the delicate balance of identity, while Rinaldo embodies the desire to balance a personal sense of duty amid societal pressures. Uhlir adopts the grand scale of history painting, while drawing inspiration from a wide array of visual material including pop culture, gay erotica, images of 1960s biker culture, and art historical canons. Looking at Eric Uhlir’s work is like flipping through pulp magazines and art history books. Images blur together on the edge of expressive abstraction, where a chaotic landscape can evoke both a literal battlefield and the conflicting emotions of inner tumult.

These paintings reward close looking, inviting viewers to find their own narratives among the compositions, where figures emerge amid a bucolic palette of blues, pinks, and greens. The lavish scene in the triptych, Beyond the point we know as the world’s end depicts characters in repose, set in a sort of hedonistic Garden of Eden. The images in the triptych panels don’t quite match up, like the idea of an idyllic past that one yearns to return to, but that might not have ever really existed. In drawing from materials throughout history, Uhlir considers the spiraling repetition of human history, and its destiny to continually repeat itself. By positioning age-old characters in today’s world, Armida & Rinaldo explores themes of identity, conflict, and desire, and boldly asserts the power of painting as storytelling to convey human experience.

Time: 10:00 am — 6:00 pm EDT

Free!

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