World-renowned Ghanaian-British artist and architect David Adjaye, and American artist Adam Pendleton are exhibiting through June 30 at the Pace Gallery in Hong Kong.
This exhibition offers a new body of paintings entitled « Sans titre, NOUS NE SOMMES PAS ». They are presented as a visible and spatial dialogue with the sculptural works of architect David Adjaye. They reveal to visitors a visual lexicon that explores questions of language, identity and monumentality.
The works of artist Adam Pendleton explore tensions, languages and sometimes representations in an abstract form. His paintings state three simple words, « we », « are » and « not », which form a complex matrix. For him, these paintings are like the voices of a multitude that does not have an identity and in their combinatory repetitions, they unfold a multiplicity: non-beings, non-non-beings and non-beings“.
These creations, formed by multiple layers of spray paint, brush marks, collages and photographs, reveal a process of transformation. It is a way of being able to capture attention and provoke open questions from visitors.
« NOUS NE SOMMES PAS », resulting from Pendleton’s seminal 2008 BlackDada text, is a phrase that forms Pendleton‘s reconfiguration of his own past language and leads the artist to explore ideas about the future through the evocation of the past while emphasizing the relationship between darkness and the avant-garde.
Each of the paintings addresses issues of historical and collective definition, and alludes to the rhetoric of contemporary identity politics. In the same spirit, Pendleton uses word repetition to fashion a kind of combinatorial structuring that encodes the ambiguous, arbitrary, and fictitious logics at the heart of identity, often taken for granted.
Architectural artist David Adjaye‘s geometric sculptures take the form of pyramids, but are composed of distinctive elements with the ability to be reconfigured in a variety of arrangements. They echo the combinatory possibilities of expression explored in Pendleton‘s paintings. The use of marble – one of the most widely used materials in the history of architecture – has allowed David Adjaye to distill his broader concepts of materiality and form that blur the boundaries between art and architecture, while evoking the history of minimal sculpture.
Ghanaian-British architect, Sir David Adjaye OBE has received international recognition for his impact on the field. In 2000, he founded Adjaye Associates, which operates worldwide, with offices in Africa, Europe, and the United States, covering several projects around the world. His largest project to date remains the founding of the National Museum of African American History & Culture in Washington, DC, which opened on the National Mall in Washington DC in 2016 and was named Cultural Event of the Year by the New York Times.
David Adjaye has had a special interest in contemporary art since the beginning of his architectural practice. He has collaborated with visual artists such as Chris Ofili with whom he created The Upper Room, a room-sized installation on permanent display at Tate Britain and also with Kapwani Kiwanga, with whom he created Sankofa Pavilion, a glass structure used as a conversational space and presented as part of the Whitechapel Gallery’s Is This Tomorrow? exhibition held in 2019.
Adam Pendleton, born in 1984 in Richmond, Virginia, lives and works in New York City.
His recent exhibitions include: the Consortium in Dijon in 2020; at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston in 2020; at the MIT List Visual Arts Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 2018; at the KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin in 2017; at the Baltic Center for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, UK (2017); at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland in 2017 and many others.
He is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Tate in London, and many other institutions.