1700 S Santa Fe Ave, #460
Los Angeles, CA 90021
Wilding Cran Gallery is pleased to present Place Like You, a selection of new paintings by Robert Gunderman, inspired by the emotive relationships between organisms and the subjectivity of the natural world. Through an exploration of the microscopic and macrocosmic biomes of our universe, the exhibition of Place Like You grounds Robert Gunderman’s artistic practice in his native landscape of Southern California. Holding the belief that everything is connected on a molecular level, Gunderman’s oil paintings of landscapes, weather systems, flora, and fauna, embrace duality, bifurcation, and paradox in order to capture the infinity of relationships held within a moment of time. In an effort to depict intricate networks of cells through the lens of human experience and tenets of theoretical physics, Place Like You is deeply informed by Gunderman’s experience as both a farmer and painter. Fusing multiple vantage points, entrenched within saturated color fields, each canvas recalls images of cartographic studies, Venn diagrams, molecular structures, and views from telescopic lenses. While encountering the series of works, the viewer ricochets between the effect of abstraction and representation. In Branch, 2023, the canvas itself becomes an equalizer between background and foreground, leaving the viewer unsure of the subject they are gazing upon. Flattened and gestural, each component of the painting is brought to the forefront of the picture plane, whether the branch, or the surrounding ether. Throughout recorded history, human beings have strived to comprehend the complexities of our lived realities, theoretically breaking ecosystems apart, in order to identify the mysteries of the universe. It is this inclination that Gunderman seeks to upend, aware of the consequences of reducing dimensionality. In doing so, we lose our ability to see ourselves and our surroundings as wholly integrated and intertwined. In a simultaneous address and departure from the approach of empirical science and mathematics, Gunderman posits that his paintings approach the same questions, distinguishing the fact that his works do not document answers, rather the search thereof. Within, the eye interprets a universe in which human beings and the natural world are in intimate communion. By collapsing organisms, environments, and energy fields within the time it takes to complete a painting, Gunderman creates portals that allow him to travel through life cycles, free from defined boundaries. Our universe contains much more than we have the capability to observe. Unbound by time, Place Like You presents an abstracted portrait of the cyclical and restorative evolution of living organisms. From subatomic particles and orange groves, to seabirds and celestial bodies, Gunderman’s paintings allow us to view the world as the artist does: a living, breathing organism composed of an evolving network of the seen and unseen, overlapping and refracting through infinite channels of connection.
Robert Gunderman (USA, b. 1963) Recent solo exhibitions include The Quiet Beliefs, Diane Rosenstein Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; This End, AF Projects, Los Angeles, CA; Mollusk Half-Sisters, Rude Drawing, Los Angeles, CA, and Never Let Us Go, Desert Center, Los Angeles, CA. Group exhibitions include Ripe, Harper’s, Los Angeles, CA; L.A. ON FIRE curated by Michael Slenske, Wilding Cran Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, and Between Worlds, Edward Cella, Los Angeles, CA. In 1992 he co-founded FOOD HOUSE, an alternative art space in Santa Monica, followed by ACME, an influential artist-run space that opened in 1994. Robert Gunderman lives and works in Fillmore CA, in the Santa Clara River Valley just north of Los Angeles.