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David Antonides

David Antonides Brunnenstr. 64 13355 Berlin 0176/69510461 www.davidantonides.com


“Ebb and Flow I”. 2012 5th Ave, New York ink and watercolour on paper 142 x 244 cm

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“STREAMING”. 2013 MONTAGE, NEW YORK WATERCOLOUR ON PAPER

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Diversified There are none of the iconic skyscrapers, not Times Square or Central Park - and yet, many of the large-format cityscapes by David Antonides clearly depict New York. High street canyons in which the light shines braking through from above. A sidewalk with a street lamp and passers-by in the background, which form a shimmering play of light and shade in the midday sunshine. A crowd of vehicles that are highly complex nested in the background, it dominates a traffic light. Actually, all motifs that are found in every city of the world - and yet it is unmistakably New York. Johannes Wendland, Kulturjournalist Berlin

„Diversified „ 2013 Berlin ink and watercolor on paper 107x152 cm

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“Overhead II”. 2012 Manhattan, New York ink and watercolour on paper 107 x 76 cm 5


“1UP�. 2011 lines around Berlin, Berliner Ringbahn ink and watercolour on paper 107 x 76 cm


Highlighting the Volatility of the Moment “David Antonides approaches the subject of

„David Antonides geht an das Thema Architektur

architecture in a very unique way. Not only this,

auf sehr eigenwillige Weise heran. Nicht nur, dass

he gives normally transparent watercolors a very

er mit Wasserfarben arbeitet, denen er das eigent-

untypical weight. He even finds train stations sti-

lich Transparente nimmt und ein ganz untypisches

mulating subjects of urban landscape. He throws

Gewicht verleiht, er findet selbst in Bahnhöfen den

a spotlight on what we find commonplace and

Reiz urbaner Landschaft. Auf das, was wir alltäg-

no longer notice, highlighting the volatility of the

lich eigentlich nicht mehr wahrnehmen, wirft er

moment.”

ein kurzes Schlaglicht, wobei die Art, wie er arbei-

Dr. Katia David, curator, 2013

tet, die Flüchtigkeit des Moments unterstreicht.” Dr. Katia David, Kuratorin, 2013

“Oberbaum Brücke II ”, 2013 Berlin ink and watercolour on paper 107 x 76 cm

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Die Verewigung des flüchtigen Augenblicks “...Davids Bild ist der Rosenthaler Platz, ist Berlin in seiner Unordnung, in seinem Chaos, als hätte man selbst gerade das Fahrrad abgeschlossen, um in die U-Bahn abzutauchen oder noch schnell den Tages einkauf zu erledigen...”

“Rosenthaler Platz Rad I” 2012 Berlin Ink and Watercolor 38x76 cm

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„Schönhauser Allee ” 2013 Berlin Ink and Watercolor 76x214 cm

„Schönhauser Allee ” 2013 (detail)

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“Hauptbahnhof�, 2011 Berlin ink and watercolour on paper 76 x 106 cm

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“Quadriga I“, 2013 Branderbuger Tor, Berlin ink and watercolor 115 x 170 cm

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“Sublime”. 2012 Manhattan, New York watercolour on paper 74 x 97 cm


“Respire”. 2012 Manhattan, New York watercolour on paper 127 x 84 cm


“Tempelhof�, 2011 Flughafen hangar , Berlin. ink and watercolour 107 x 76 cm

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“Balroom”. 2010 Clärchens Ballahus, Berlin ink and watercolour on paper 106 x 76 cm

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“Overflight�. 2011 Berlin, ink and watercolour on paper and acetate 37 x 46 cm

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Curriculum Vitae David Antonides wurde als Sohn niederländischer Einwanderer in Whitehorse geboren. Sein griechischer Name geht zurück auf einen Priester, der 1649 von Sparta in die Niederlande kam. Aufgewachsen ist er in Penticton in British Columbia, wo er bis zum 18. Lebensjahr die Schule besuchte. Die nächsten zehn Jahre arbeitete er in der Kommunikations- und Computerindustrie, sein Hauptaugenmerk lag jedoch im Reisen. Unter anderem hielt er sich für mehrere Jahre in Asien, Europa und Afrika auf. Des Weiteren bereiste er Mittel- und Nordamerika sowie den Südpazifik. Danach gründete er mit einem Partner die Canadian Electronics Corperation (CEC), die er 14 Jahre bis 1998 leitete.

At Vancouver Fishing Harbour (FCHA) during the painting of “Traverse” 2011

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Seit seinem Schulabschluss 1976 besuchte er Workshops und Seminare von Malern und Zeichnern. Um sein Wissen im Bereich der Bildenden Kunst zu vertiefen, nahm er als Gasthörer an Vorlesungen an der Fakultät für Kunstgeschichte an der University of British Columbia in Vancouver teil. 1998 verkaufte er CEC und widmete sich nun ganz der Kunst. Er lebte für einige Jahre auf seinem Segelboot, mit welchem er die Pazifikküste bis Südalaska erkundete, wenn er nicht im Hafen von Vancouver vor Anker lag und Kunst studierte. Während dieser Zeit besuchte er die Vancouver Academy of Art, wo er an Kursen in Anatomie, Aktzeichnen, Aquarellieren und Bildhauerei teilnahm. Von 2000 bis 2005 lebte er in Vancouver und studierte zeitgleich Kunst an der Art Students League of New York und Betriebswirtschaft in London Ontario an der IVEY School of Business. Mit einem Master of Business Adminstration verließ er die Western University und begann als Bildender Künstler in Vancouver und New York zu arbeiten. Erste Ausstellungen in Auto One and Atelier Gallery und Becker Gallery, Mowatt Gallery in Vancouver folgten. Die Zusammenarbeit zwischen Broadfoot&Broadfoot in New York beginnt und 2009 zeigt er großformatige Aquarelle im Tower49 in New York. 2010 widmete er sich den verschiedenen künstlerische Drucktechniken und verbringt Arbeitsaufenthalte in London, Montréal und Berlin. In Berlin gründete er 2011 die Produzentengalerie Brunnen64, wo er arbeitet und seine Werke sowie die anderer Künstler zeigt. Im November 2011 widmete ihm Der Tagesspiegel seine Ausgabe von „Mehr Berlin“. Zu sehen waren Arbeiten zum Thema Berliner Flughäfen.

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In 2012 und 2013 wurden seine Arbeiten in internationalen Einzel- Und Gruppenausstellungen gezeigt. Seine Arbeiten waren auf internationalen Kunstmessen (Toronto Art Fair 2012 und Berliner Liste2013) zu sehen. 2013 konnte der Film „Painting in the Rain“ von Frank Lee gelauncht werden, er zeigt wie David Antonides seine Aquarelltechnik den Gezeiten unterwirft und damit den Fischerhafen in Vancouver belebt und ein einzigartiges Kunstwerk schafft.

At Vancouver Fishing Harbour (FCHA) during the painting of “Traverse” 2011

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Ausstellungen

SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2013 “Ghost and Twins“. Brunnen64, Berlin, November 2013 „Summer Days“ Brunnen64, Berlin, July 2013 „New Work“, Granville Fine Art, Vancouver, April 2013 2012 Broadfoot and Broadfoot Gallery, NYC Brunnen64, Berlin 2011 Lines around Berlin, Paths through NYC „CITY CODE *required, Urban views and identities“, Brunnen64, Berlin, März/ April 2011

2010 Brunnen64, Berlin, Becker Galleries, Vancouver Jasmunder Strasse, Berlin 2009 Atelier Gallery, Vancouver Broadfoot and Broadfoot Gallery, NYC

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SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 2013 Berliner Liste, artfair, with Albert Baake Galerie Druckwerkstatt Kunstquartier Bethanien exhibits at Limerick Printmakers, Ireland „Macht Kunst“ Deutsche Bank, Kunsthalle, Berlin Albert Baake Galerie, Potsdam, Germany Broadfoot and Broadfoot Gallery, NYC and NJ „The Red Show“ Granville Fine Art, Vancouver 2012 Fall Arts Preview - Oktober, 2012, Granville Fine Art, Vancouver Toronto International Art Fair, with GFA October 2012 Open Air Gallery, Berlin, August 2012 Albert Baake Galerie, Potsdam, Germany NordArt, Kunstwerk Carlshütte, Germany Broadfoot and Broadfoot, NYC „Kunst pur“, Galerie Wedding, Berlin „Sans souci“, Arbeiten auf Papier, Juli/ August 2012 Galerie 30 Links , Berlin und Rathaus Potsdam 2011 Broadfoot and Broadfoot, NYC and NJ Openair Gallery, Berlin, Juli 2011 Granville Fine Art, Vancouver „Werkstattdrucke“ Druckwerkstatt in Bethanien, Berlin

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2010 „inner-view. zeitfenster, interiors – inside out“, Brunnen64, November/ Dezmeber 2010 Becker Galleries, Vancouver Olympic Games Exhibition, Vancouver Broadfoot and Broadfoot Galleries, NYC and NJ 2009 Atelier Gallery, Vancouver Phylis Harriman Gallery, NYC Zane Bennett Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM,

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Mittwoch, 9. Oktober 2013 18:07:22


Moments in the City, Big and Small

David Antonides’ large cityscapes convey a weight and drama not always associated with watercolor and reflect his interests in community, technology, and the interconnectedness of nature and the city. by Austin R. Williams 40

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T

he cityscapes of Canadian artist David Antonides simultaneously present two sides of contemporary urban life. They capture the great scale and drama of the modern metropolis, but they also stay grounded in the small, fleeting human experiences that make up life in the city. The artist’s work reveals a keen awareness of the interconnectedness of people and their environment— whether the paintings depict towering buildings or anonymous feet descending steps in a public park. It’s immediately apparent that Antonides’ paintings are watercolors—they are full of above drips, washes, and splatters—but Eidetic their sensibility is far removed 2008, watercolor, 38 x 50. Courtesy from watercolor norms. The Broadfoot & Broadfoot, artist says that after working in New York, New York. watercolor for several years, he opposite page wanted to move away from the Free Flow delicate look that the medium is so 2008, watercolor, 50 x 38. All artwork often associated with in Western this article private art. “I spent a fair amount of time collection unless otherwise indicated. looking at Asian calligraphy,” he www.ArtistDaily.com

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says, “and I began to want to express things more firmly. I wanted to combine and contrast that with the transparency we look for in watercolor. The idea of combining these two separate things—light and transparency with something bold and heavy—was very attractive to me.” Antonides mostly paints three cities: Vancouver, New York, and Berlin. “Vancouver is where I was raised,” he says. “It’s very personal to me, and that connection became part of my subject 42

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matter. New York is the iconic metropolis, and it has interesting geometry and a skyline that delivers a lot of dynamic lines. Berlin is where I live right now. It has interesting architecture filled with contrast, as well as a rich history.” Whichever city he is painting, Antonides generally avoids easily recognizable landmarks in favor of more anonymous locations and everyday occurrences. “Most of my personal experience of the city is not spending time at the Empire State www.ArtistDaily.com

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Advice From the Artist: Very Dark Darks

Antonides’ paintings are notable for their rich, deep darks. The artist says that the secret is to use many blues—his palette includes numerous shades, and it also includes black. At times the artist modulates the amount of gum Arabic in his paints, which can affect their darkness.

above

Firefly 2007, watercolor, 22 x 30. top right

Permeable 2008, watercolor, 38 x 50.

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Building or Statue of Liberty,” he observes. “My subjects come from what I notice when I’m on the street and see light in a certain way—I like to build on a strong emotional and visual impression.” Antonides’ paintings serve to rebuff two common misconceptions about life in the city. The first is the notion that the city is something apart from nature—an idea that is implicitly present whenever we distinguish between a landscape and a cityscape, for example. But for Antonides, the city is an extension of and partner to the natural world, not something removed from it. “You can view the flowing traffic in a cityscape as a waterfall, or see movement through the city as rocks drifting down a river,” the artist says. “I like to see those aspects of continual movement as part of nature. Another way that the city is connected to nature is through light, which is ubiquitous.

The same light falls in nature as in the city, and sometimes, when there’s beautiful light during part of the day, it feels as though the city is natural. The effects of wind and deterioration are other points of commonality. We in the city are closer to nature than it might appear.” Antonides also strives to disprove the perception that people in cities are isolated or detached from their fellows. Rather, the connections between us form one of the main subjects of his paintings, which are filled with people doing what they most often do in cities— walking, sitting, and talking. Within groups of people, the artist finds interesting geometrical arrangements and patterns of light and shadow. “I think it’s fascinating to see the people sitting on the steps in Union Square, in New York, for example, and the shapes they make,” he says. People are essential to Antonides’ vision of the city. His figures may appear anonymous—few bear sharp likenesses—but rather than indicating some lack of humanity, this interchangeability shows a sort of unity. These people could be anybody, ourselves included. “What I’d like to express is a commonality between us,” he says. Spring 2012 43

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“There’s this idea that in the city we’re these detached individuals, but 2008, watercolor, I think the opposite is true. We have 38 x 50. much in common, and we’re doing opposite page such similar things. In a simple visual Formed by Fire way, we all look very similar, too.” 2009, watercolor, 50 x 38. Although there is something timeless about Antonides’ urban visions, he is also firmly attached to aspects of the present moment. He is visually inspired by early-21st-century technology, such as cell-phone-camera photos and usergenerated videos from the early days of YouTube. “It wasn’t so long ago that the limitations of bandwidth and technology produced unique and specific effects, and caused videos to be slow and look unusual,” the artist says. “I found early YouTube postings really interesting because of their forced simplicity.” Antonides’ paintings, which frequently depict seemingly inconsequential moments and sometimes appear blurred or damaged, manage to evoke the oblique angles and low-resolution of these photographs above

Idiomatic

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and videos. The combination of this distinctly contemporary aesthetic into a medium as old and traditional as watercolor provides a rich, unexpected source of contrast. But unlike digital media, Antonides’ artwork is richly tangible. Throughout his painting process, the artist strives to emphasize the existence of his paintings as physical objects. “I studied at the Art Students League of New York, where we were schooled in classical methods,” he recalls. “I like things to be linked to the past, and I like producing something that is not digitally reproducible. So I like if a piece of paper is really marked up with pushpins and stapler marks—it becomes an artifact in itself.” In keeping with this belief, Antonides employs effects that show the paper and his tools at work. He scratches and rubs the wet paper with old brushes or household tools. His painting implements include inexpensive wire brushes and cleaning tools he buys at the hardware store. “These make particular marks on the paper that hold the paint in a certain way,” he says. His paintings, as a result, look weathered and have a distinct three-dimensionality Spring 2012 45

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about them. Their presence as objects is undeniable. 2008, watercolor, The size of the works forms 50 x 38. another part of their impact. below Antonides favors a large scale Fifth Layer as a way of providing a more 2011, watercolor, 22 x 20. Courtesy immersive experience—both Broadfoot & to himself, as he paints, and Broadfoot, New York, New York. to viewers. He often paints on 40"-x-60" sheets of 1,200-lb Arches paper, which has a cardboard-like feel. He also uses rolls of Stonehenge’s Rising paper. He notes that these two surfaces are opposites in terms of texture. “But they’re both papers that are quite resilient,” he explains, “which is necessary for my technique. They have surfaces that allow them to be scarred and roughed up without causing too much damage.” Antonides’ paintings are influenced by moments in the city when he is inspired by falling light, an arrangement of people or shapes, or a specific moment that speaks to him. He may take a photograph or make a sketch to work from later. Before embarking on a large painting, the artist completes small studies, sometimes in oil. Once the design is generally set, he goes right to his paper. He begins a piece by sketching in the dynamic lines and dark passages of the painting with fairly heavy paint, to “more or less build what’s going to be the final visual structure.” He next begins working in areas with less detail. “Then I’ll step back, analyze it, look at it from a purely aesthetic point of view, and spend time thinking about how the painting will be realized.” As he proceeds, Antonides frequently makes major alterations, erasing or altering passages. “There’s a lot of editing that goes on,” the artist says. “It’s a process of building up and opposite page

Cascade

deconstructing. And each time, there are remnants of the previous change.” Once he is satisfied with the major shapes and areas, he spends time working on details and color transitions to bring the painting to a more refined state. Antonides likes to paint outside or in the public eye, and this forms another way in which his paintings are intertwined with the life of the cities they depict. “My ideal would be if I could paint in a public place or storefront where people could see me working, and for it to be something normal,” he says. “If I’m painting in a poor community, where people don’t often have exposure to artists, my painting there is unusual, and I’d like to change that. Maybe people will think, ‘I could do that too.’ That’s part of why I paint out in the rain or in storefronts. It’s not to make it a media event, it’s so that people see that art can be part of everyday life.” This passion for expanding the reach of art is firmly in line with the vision expressed through the artist’s work. His mammoth cityscapes reveal that in spite of its scale and its intensity, the city is made up of a large community of people, all of whom have more in common than they realize. In both his methods and his finished pieces, Antonides combines the big with the small and uses art to bring people closer together. n

About the Artist

David Antonides was born in Whitehorse, Yukon, and raised in Vancouver. He studied at the Vancouver Academy of Art and the Art Students League of New York. His work can be found in public and corporate collections across the world. For more information, visit www.davidantonides.com.

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