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paul kos allegories & metaphors

1969-2012 march 3rd- april 7th 2012


paul kos allegories & metaphors

1969-2012 march 3rd- april 7th 2012


all·e·gory, noun, the expression by means of symbolic fictional figures and actions of truths or generalizations about human existence; also: an instance (as in a story or painting) of such expression. met·a·phor, noun, a figure of speech in which a word or phrase literally denoting one kind of object or idea is used in place of another to suggest a likeness or analogy between them (as in drowning in money); broadly: figurative language. The 60s in California marked a time when contemplation of the translucency of the surf, light and atmosphere were rendered into an experiential representation, an attempt to unlock the phenomenological. Beginning in 1970, both Northern and Southern Californians added the passage of time and even sound to the visual spectrum/landscape. This exploration, when successful, yielded works layered with questions while never losing connection to the visual. Minimalism was now becoming a pack-mule to the creation of Conceptualism. Paul Kos was among the most poetic, humorous and dry mountaineers to ascend these peaks, making a smooth transition from the plains of minimalism. The journey of Fetishism became the destination. Time: The Sound of Ice Melting, 1970, a seminal work in Kos’ body of work may as well be a self-portrait, or at least a portrait of the inner workings of his brain. While the obvious irony that ice melting is synonymous with silence and the elaborate staging of equipment is a ruse, the sculptural formality of mike stands surrounding the blocks of ice and the poetry of nature shrinking the ice over time is carefully choreographed.

Perspective: Roping Boar’s Tusk, 1971, is a one-minute video showing Kos’s attempt to lasso a distant mountain peak. The repetition of gesture for this futile act serves to lash together Minimalism and the conceptual videos of Bruce Nauman, by contextualizing/veiling the work in nature. Thus, softening the “this is art” without losing the poignancy of the underlying observation about the eye’s ability to measure space and scale without reference. Gravity: Sand Piece, 1971, involves inserting a thin copper pipe through the floor of the gallery, penetrating the ceiling of the floor below. Two thousand pounds of kiln-dried sand is painstaking piled symmetrically over the copper pipe. The sand drains through the pipe until a perfect volcano form is drained from the center, coming to an abrupt halt, and the blurred mirror sculpture on the floor below is completed. Nature has kept herself in check, suspending animation, Kos, nature’s congenial conductor. —Tim Nye


from the plains of minimalism to mountainous

conceptualism

by tim nye


Aerial Salt Sculpture, 1969 Ink on Chrome Coat paper 10 x 8.5 inches


Aerial View of Kinetic Salt/ Water Sculpture, 1969 Ink of Chrome Coal paper 10 x 8.5 inches


Attack on the Pawn with a Sling Shot at 8 meters, 1992 Pencil on sheet-rock with 2 lead pellets shot with a sling shot 17 x 17 inches


Avalanche I, 1982 Ink of Chrome Coat paper 17.25 x 15.25 inches


Avalanche II, 1982 Ink on Chrome Coat paper 17.25 x 15.25 inches


Avalanche III, 1982 Ink on Chrome Coat paper 17.25 x 15.25 inches


Avalanche IV, 1982 Ink on Chrome Coat paper 17.25 x 15.25 inches


Plan for Kinetic Ice Block, 1969 Ink on chrome coat paper 8.5 x 10 inches


Kinetic Salt Piece, 1969 Ink on Chrome Coat paper 10 x 8.5 inches


Proposal: Red Salt Pillars on Salt Flats Utah, 1969 Ink on chrome coat paper 9 x 12 inches


Red Salt Blocks on White Salt, 1969 Ink on chrome coat paper 9 x 12 inches


Tent (in the wind), 1982 Graphite on paper with audio 29 x 23.25 inches


Sand Piece, 1971 Sixty mesh silica, white sand, and brass tube Sand: dimensions variable Tube: 1/8 inch diameter


BER LIN, 1990 Neon 27 x 19 inches


Caucasus Carpet, 1995 Carpet and engraved circular architectural element 114 x 50 inches


Coal/Canary (Weight of a Song), 2007 Two 250lb pieces of coal, wood and steel cart, audio 38 x 48 x 30 inches My father and grandfather were coal mine doctors in Wyoming. One time I went out to the mine and asked if they could keep me a chunk before it was crushed. Had this 500 pound chunk. I split it into 200, and 300. I bought a “German Roller Canary” for Isabelle Sorrelle - taped his singing. “German Roller Canary” were used as air quality indicators in the coal mines. When they stopped singing,(and maybe died), the air quality was no longer suitable for the miners. German miners would conduct singing competitions with their canarys after.


Diminuendo/Crescendo, 2011 Tape, steel and wood balls, PVC pipe, bronze bells, pillow Dimensions variable


Emboss I, 1995 Black & white photograph 80 x 38.5 inches


Equilibre II, 1992 Broom, coat hanger, 2 candles 57 x 40 inches


The Sound of Ice Melting, 1970 Two twenty-five-pound blocks of ice, eight boom microphone stands, eight microphones, mixer, amplifier, two large speakers, and cables. Dimensions variable. Richard Beggs (Academy Award winner in sound for Appacolpyse now) helped put together the piece.


Equilibrium, 1987 Anthracite coal, chopsticks, canary feather, twine, spindle 5.5 x 19 x 2 inches


Glacier Golf, 1982 Ice Variable


International Music Box (German), 1992 Mixed media 7.5 x 11.5 x 3.25 inches


Joseph’s Coat of Many Colors, 1997-98 Wool, natural dye 48 x 60 x 396 inches


Montezuma’s Gift (Bronze & Gold), 1998 Bronze, 22k gold leaf 4.5 x 4.5 x 4.5 inches


Not Whole, 2001 Wood, video, audio 40 x 27.75 inches


Scything, 2005 Horse hoof, plastic figure 5.5 x 5.5 x 5.5 inches


Sluice, 1973 Steel, 24 carat gold leaf 180 x 24 x 96 inches


Study for Galvanized Bell, 1988 Black & white photograph 22 x 18.875 inches


Trotsky, 1989 Red wood stool, ice axe driven into sheet-rock with one blow 118 x 13 x 20.5 inches


Tunnel, 1995 Wood table, cheese round, and toy train with track 32 x 96 x 23.75 inches


Tunnel (Detail), 1995 Wood table, cheese round, and toy train with track 32 x 96 x 23.75 inches


Can’t Get it Right No Matter Where I Go, 2006 Black and white digital print 20 x 16 inches


Beethoven Piano Sonata #13, 2009 video projection on paint, canvas, wood 74 x 98 inches I thought painting could be pushed in a different direction if it was pushed into the digital world. It just occurred to me that if I was to project onto a painting that was filled with brushstrokes and drips, that I could create a blend that could be a nice hybrid between the two. I have been doing video painting since 2004. When I was teaching, I went to the music department and asked if anyone was playing Beethoven Sonatas. I found a woman playing Beethoven’s 13th Sonata. I video taped the inside of the piano as she played the piece. In a way it is the first of the video paintings which wasn’t set in nature.


Sierra Snowstorm, 2004 Video projection and acrylic on paper and wood 39 x 51 inches Watch Video ›


Yuba Red Rock, 2007 Video projection on paint, canvas, wood 55.5 x 73 inches


Roping Boar’s Tusk, 1971 DVD (Transferred from Super-8 film) There is a frozen volcanic plug in the red desert area on Wyoming. I climbed out and tried to lasso it with the idea of one point perspective. It is absurd as The Sound of Ice Melting. There is some credibility to the 2D quality of projection.


Ice Makes Fire, 2004 Video Watch Video ›


Lightning, 1976 Black & white video with sound Watch Video ›


La Vache, 1996 Color video with sound


Brieftauben, 1987 Color video with sound Watch Video ›


358 West 20th Street, New York, NY 10011 212 366 4493 | gallery@nyehaus.com


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Paul Kos: Allegories & Metaphors, 1969 - 2012  

Nyehaus 358 West 20th Street New York, NY 10011

Paul Kos: Allegories & Metaphors, 1969 - 2012  

Nyehaus 358 West 20th Street New York, NY 10011

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