Matthew Hansel “Those Who Never Set Their Table Never Dine Alone,” 2021

Nature Morte
The Hole NYC
From April 8 – May 9th, 2021

From April 8 to May 9, art lovers can visit Nature Morte, this year’s thematic group exhibition at The Hole NYC. Drawing from an environmental inspiration, the 60-artist still life show will include a total transformation of the full gallery space, including both the showroom and the office, into a dark concrete and forest environment.

The exhibition, which chooses the French appellation that translates directly from “dead nature,” focuses on themes inspired by the global environmental crisis. Featured subject matter ranges from turgid bouquets by Ivan Seal and Holbein-inspired skulls by Robert Lazzarini to a roasted duck on a hook by Stephanie H. Shih and a melting garbage snowman by Theo A. Rosenblum and Chelsea Seltzer. From renowned to unknown artists, the available paintings, sculptures, works on paper, and photography challenge the traditional elements of still life and lead viewers into the uncharted territory of the exhibition’s dark concrete forest. According to the press release, the still life genre has most recently been impacted by not only the transience of life but the impending climate catastrophe that promises the end of all life.


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The artists in Nature Morte depict disease, death, and dark nature with taxidermied animals and inedible fruits as per their responses to the environmental crisis. Allison Schulnik’s delicate dead sparrow, Austin Lee’s gigantic bronze computer-generated imagery (CGI) of a lion, Aaron Elvis Jupin’s forest fire, Adam de Boer’s highway overpass, and Rosson Crow’s vibrant jungle laces with tar pits are all works of art available to view that offer a darker meaning to even the more lively works.

“When pondering death in the 17th century, audiences looked at skulls, blown-out candles, dead animals, flowers and fruits—and bubbles for some reason,” The Hole NYC said in a statement. “Today we gaze upon much of the same, plus melting mini-fridges, sliced up butterflies, flooding, cigarette butts, and mylar balloons. Collectively, the works in Nature Morte contemplate death at a time when humanity’s doom is realistically into view; life is fleeting as you see a blown-out candle or life is fleeting as you see melting ice sheet chunks the size of Manhattan.”

An opening event is set for Thursday, April 8 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. following all COVID-19 precautions. For more information, click here.


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