Beginning March 4, 2006, the James Cohan Gallery will present an exhibition of new paintings by artist Trenton Doyle Hancock. The bulk of the show is devoted to large mixed-media works from a new series entitled In the Blestian Room. Hancock will also premiere a new set of prints, called The Ossified Theosophied. The exhibition runs through April 15.
Hancock's candy-colored works are suffused with personal mythology, presented at an operatic scale. Through collage, paint, and accumulations of detritus, he creates exuberant and subversive narratives. Hancock employs a variety of cultural tropes, ranging in tone from comic-strip superhero battles to medieval morality plays, and in style from Hieronymus Bosch to Max Ernst. He uses language, which is embedded within the paintings and drawings, both as way to drive the narrative and as a central visual component. For In the Blestian Room, Hancock adds new chapters to an ongoing absurdist parable of good and evil. The battle between the Vegans and the meat-eating Mounds takes a new turn, as Sesom, one of the Vegans, has a dream in which he discovers the liberating power of color. In The Ossified Theosophied, a transformed Sesom begins to make his miracle-machines, creating the life-affirming color blasts. Simultaneous with the exhibition, Hancock will release a book entitled Me a Mound, published by Picturebox and distributed by D.A.P. This richly illustrated volume will present a retrospective of the artist's work, showing the evolution of his distinctive saga.
The Texas-based Hancock has shown in numerous exhibitions nationally and internationally, including the 2000 and 2002 Whitney Biennials. Solo exhibitions of his work have been mounted at the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami. He has also shown internationally at the Lyon and Istanbul Biennials and will have an exhibitions show at the Fruitmarket, Edinburgh in early 2007.
Video documentation of the show is available at Vernisage TV.