A detail from a painting by Oscar Murillo, titled catalyst #25, dated 2017.

Oscar Murillo

the build-up of content and information

David Zwirner will present an exhibition of paintings and works on paper by Oscar Murillo, marking the artist’s first solo presentation in Asia.

Born in Colombia and based in various locations, Murillo is known for an inventive and itinerant practice that encompasses paintings, works on paper, sculptures, installations, actions, live events, collaborative projects, and videos. Taken as a whole, his body of work demonstrates a sustained emphasis on the notion of cultural exchange and the multiple ways in which ideas, languages, and even everyday items are displaced, circulated, and increasingly intermingled. Through his command of gesture, form, and spatial organization, Murillo is able to convey a complex and nuanced understanding of the specific conditions of globalization and its attendant state of flux, while nevertheless maintaining the universality of human experience within this milieu.

In recent years, Murillo has traveled extensively throughout the world to research and prepare exhibitions and other projects, making works both in the studio and in unexpected locations. As a result, airplanes, which are able to move more or less freely and without regard to borders, and the contemplative isolation afforded by these long journeys, have become an important site of production for the artist. As Murillo explains: "Constant transnational movement has become an integral facet of my practice. Flight becomes not just a means of travel but a sacred ‘other’ space, the aeroplane seat itself becoming a unique ‘studio’ at a remove, a non-place which is both physically confined and freed from being in any real geographical location. Within this space, during the proscribed periods of time each journey affords, I engage in notation, mark making, recording, layering gestural marks onto surfaces: sketchbooks, Japanese paper, printouts from Google Maps, landing cards. This practice becomes a process of experimentation, of accumulation, and, in a sense, of research."

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Image: Oscar Murillo, catalyst #25, 2017 (detail)

Dates
September 19November 3, 2018
Opening Reception
Wednesday, September 19, 6-8 PM
Artist
A detail from a painting by Oscar Murillo, titled untitled (news), dated 2017 to 2018.

"The personal desire to go beyond national identity lies precisely in my early uprooting. . . . I could not take for granted the conditions of thinking and making or the circumstances in which the context of a work will be read and received." —Oscar Murillo

"Rather than the politics of visibility, it is the ‘impossibility of settlement’ that haunts the lines and marks of Murillo’s work."

Image: Oscar Murillo, untitled (news), 2017–2018 (detail) © Oscar Murillo. Courtesy the artist

"At a certain height in the earth’s atmosphere, land, laws, borders, and governmental regulation begin to lose their control over individuals. In this borderless frontier, at thirty-seven thousand feet above sea level, a temporary warping of geographical belonging occurs—a spatial and temporal reorganizing during which, for a moment, roads and cities simply become lines and marks on the surface of nature."

Image: Installation View, Oscar Murillo: the build-up of content and information, David Zwirner, Hong Kong, 2018

Installation view of the exhibition Oscar Murillo: the build-up of content information, at David Zwirner in Hong Kong, dated 2018.
Installation view of the exhibition Oscar Murillo: the build-up of content information, at David Zwirner in Hong Kong, dated 2018.

"The producer and the site are both in constant motion. . . . [Murillo’s] ongoing series of drawings and source material (2013–ongoing) comprises the drawings he makes while in flight, where the remoteness, altitude, speed, and compressed time-space allow his imaginary to unravel the notions of place and belonging that were once thought to be stable. These works, as well as others such as his catalyst series (2012–ongoing) and recent exhibitions . . . all point to a type of analogue terra incognita, a visual detachment from territoriality that questions the marks . . . that carve out nationhood and migration and configure our understanding of the globe."

Image: Installation View, Oscar Murillo: the build-up of content and information, David Zwirner, Hong Kong, 2018

"This aerial view has led Murillo to question some of the fundamental observations in painting and cartography, and misconceptions of scale and form. For him, the outlines of countries become directly related to the formulation of a type of mark. This mark links what Murillo considers to be the energy of flight, or catalysts, to the sensation of disconnection and to mobility, binding images and lived experience into visual and material form." 

All quotes excerpted from Victor Wang, "Horizons in Flight Mode," 2018, from the catalogue accompanying the exhibition, forthcoming from David Zwirner Books.

Image: Oscar Murillo, emergent and upbeat, 2017–2018 (detail). © Oscar Murillo. Courtesy the artist

A detail from a painting by Oscar Murillo, titled emergent and upbeat, dated 2017 to 2018.
An untitled painting by Oscar Murillo, dated 2014 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

untitled, 2014-2018
Oil and oil stick on canvas and linen with eyelets, steel poles, steel brackets
118 7/8 x 141 3/4 x 11 3/4 inches (302 x 360 x 30 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled catalyst #28, dated 2018.

Oscar Murillo

catalyst #28, 2018
Oil and graphite on canvas
102 3/8 x 92 1/2 inches (260 x 235 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled the build-up of content and information, dated 2016 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

the build-up of content and information, 2016-2018
Oil and oil stick on canvas and linen
122 x 122 inches (310 x 310 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled emergent and upbeat, dated 2017 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

emergent and upbeat, 2017-2018
Graphite, oil and oil stick on canvas, velvet and linen
102 3/8 x 102 3/8 inches (260 x 260 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled untitled (news), dated 2017 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

untitled (news), 2017-2018
Oil and oil stick on linen, canvas and velvet
72 7/8 x 90 1/2 inches (185 x 230 cm)
A work on paper by Oscar Murillo, titled flight #3, dated 2018.

Oscar Murillo

flight #3, 2018
Pen, pencil, graphite and carbon on paper in Perspex frame
9 3/8 x 12 3/4 inches (23.7 x 32.4 cm)
A work on paper by Oscar Murillo, titled flight #8, dated 2018.

Oscar Murillo

flight #8, 2018
Pen, pencil, graphite and carbon on paper in Perspex frame
9 3/8 x 12 3/4 inches (23.7 x 32.4 cm)
A work on paper by Oscar Murillo, titled flight #23, dated 2018.

Oscar Murillo

flight #23, 2018
Pen, pencil, graphite and carbon on paper in Perspex frame
24 5/8 x 36 7/8 inches (62.7 x 93.6 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled geographical perplexity, dated 2016 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

geographical perplexity, 2016-2018
Oil and oil stick on canvas and linen
86 5/8 x 96 1/2 inches (220 x 245 cm)
A painting in two parts by Oscar Murillo, titled AI #1, dated 2014 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

AI #1, 2014-2018
Oil, oil stick and latex on canvas, linen and velvet in two (2) parts
Left: 82 5/8 x 82 5/8 inches (210 x 210 cm) Right: 82 5/8 x 84 5/8 inches (210 x 215 cm) Overall: 82 5/8 x 167 3/8 inches (210 x 425 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled regional resource, dated 2017 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

regional resource, 2017-2018
Oil and oil stick on canvas, linen and velvet
78 3/4 x 84 5/8 inches (200 x 215 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled human resources, dated 2015 to 2016.

Oscar Murillo

human resources, 2015-2016
Oil and oil stick on canvas with eyelets, steel poles, steel brackets
133 7/8 x 137 3/4 x 11 3/4 inches (340 x 350 x 30 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled fossil, dated 2016 to 2018.

Oscar Murillo

fossil, 2016-2018
Oil and oil stick on canvas and linen
118 1/4 x 125 7/8 inches (300.5 x 320 cm)
A painting by Oscar Murillo, titled catalyst #25, dated 2017.

Oscar Murillo

catalyst #25, 2017
Oil and oil stick on canvas and linen
113 3/8 x 97 1/4 inches (288 x 247 cm)

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