Antony Valerian

I Showed Them How to Build a Cross

09 Nov 2019 - 11 Jan 2020

© Antony Valerian
I Showed Them How to Build a Cross
I Showed Them How to Build a Cross
9 November 2019 – 11 January 2020

Following the artist Antony Valerian’s successful debut two years ago in our Vienna gallery, we are now pleased to invite you to the opening of his first solo exhibition in our Berlin space. Titled I Showed Them How to Build a Cross it will feature new paintings that involve the viewer in the painter’s inner world and his perception of reality. The decisive gesture and subdued motifs of these paintings create an atmosphere of melancholy, placidity, and vehemence.

Valerian’s predominantly large-format works present a reality determined by jarring color compositions and unusual perspectives. Abstraction and figuration are caught in a balancing act. At times the subjects appear to be flooded by shapes and colors; other times it is abstraction itself that resurrects figures.

Powerful brushstrokes, marks of gradient color, and carefully drawn lines conjure the artist’s presence. Valerian conjures a singular atmosphere that surrounds and captivates the viewer. His imagery recalls painted stories in which everyday objects take on unexpected meaning, and isolated figures convey a sense of seclusion and melancholy.

Valerian plays with the common conventions of painting and frees himself from that genre’s narrow boundaries. He experiments with a wide variety of materials and uses the given format to create a force field that in turn influences the work’s development. The paintings challenge us to fathom the secrets that hide between the layers of color. The viewer is suddenly involved in the motif. We begin to fill them with our own thoughts, feelings, and memories, to read our own narrative within them.

Antony Valerian was born in Hamburg in 1992 and studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna under Daniel Richter. His works have appeared in numerous international solo and group exhibitions in Moscow, Madrid, New York, Hamburg, Berlin, and Vienna. They are found in prestigious private collections in Madrid, Vienna, Berlin, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and New York. He currently lives in Berlin and Vienna.