Opening reception: Saturday, January 7, 6–8pm
Blum & Poe is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Banks Violette, his first one-person exhibition in Los Angeles.
Simultaneously rooted in Minimalist form and contemporary in its use of industrial materials, Violette’s artistic practice freely employs diverse media, such as neon tubing, powder-coated steel, glass, salt, resin, and aluminum. Violette draws inspiration from a variety of subcultural communities, including hardcore punk and drone metal bands like Sunn O))), political conspiracy theorists, both left and right-wing religious fanatics, and most recently NASCAR and the iconography which populates the sport’s predominantly southern fan base. As if arrested in time, Violette’s sculptural objects and installations function as elegant reminders of darker moments past and present.
Complimenting Violette’s sculptures are impeccably drafted graphite drawings on paper mounted on aluminum panel. Recent subjects include a Budweiser logo split in thirds, an upside-down and fractured American flag, the Oakland Raiders logo emblazoned with a skull, and a drawing of the number “88,” a nod to NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr. These dark, cultural crosscurrents within Violette’s artistic vocabulary manifest themselves both two and three dimensionally. Whether drawn, cast, burned, crushed, or coated, the final product remains indelibly linked to Violette – his hand and psyche.
Banks Violette (b. 1973, Ithaca, NY) received his B.F.A. from the School of Visual Arts, New York and his M.F.A. from Columbia University, New York. Violette lives and works in Brooklyn, New York and has exhibited widely, including solo exhibitions at Museum Dhont-Dhaenens, Deurle, Belgium (2009-10); Modern Art Museum, Fort Worth, TX (2008); and Bergen Kunsthall, Bergen, Norway (2007). Notable group exhibitions include Kurt, Seattle Art Museum (2010); Compass in Hand: Selections from the Judith Rothschild Foundation Contemporary Drawings Collection, Museum of Modern Art, New York (2009); The Shapes of Space, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2007); USA Today (works from the Saatchi Collection), Royal Academy, London (2006); and The Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2004). Violette’s work is included in the public collections of such prestigious institutions as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Geneva; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.