Stephen G・Rhodes “There is No Bear Bear Ladder”

April 17 - May 31, 2009

Opening reception : April 17, 2009 18:00 - 20:00

MISAKO & ROSEN is pleased to announce the debut exhibition in Japan of Los Angeles based artist Stephen G Rhodes. A recent MFA graduate of the Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, California (2005), Rhodes has participated in numerous international solo and group exhibitions. A selection includes “The Generational : Younger Than Jesus” at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York (forthcoming, April, 2009), “Prospect. 1, New Orleans” (2008-09) and “between two deaths”, ZKM, Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2007).

“A color is haunting all of the work.”
-Stephen G. Rhodes

Born in Houston, Texas (1977), raised in Louisiana and presently a resident of Los Angeles, Rhodes’s work conflates seemingly disparate historical and cultural source material in multi-media installations at once delirious and highly determined.

The present exhibition, “There is No Bear Bear Ladder”, part of an ongoing project, itself references a literary standard, Gertrude Stein’s “There is no there there”, and consists of a set of paintings, collage, sculpture and a looped film comprised of manipulated footage from an out of circulation Disney film “Song of the South” (notably still available within Japan), sounds and imagery from Stanley Kubrick’s film adaptation of Stephen King’s “The Shining”and actions carried out by Rhodes while wearing a bear-suit before the camera within his studio.

Consistent with Rhodes’s practice, the “No Bear Bear” project actively engages cultural artifacts of repression through a haptic process of sampling and splicing, the resulting installation, though a further repression, revealing sub-meanings and sub-narratives buried within the original source material. Though highly personal in nature, Rhodes’s work deals with contemporary issues of general concern; his abuse of the chroma or green screen, a device utilized to transport his bear-self into the Disney narrative, and the screen’s literal reanimation within the context of the gallery installation as a collapsed sculpture exists as both a provocation and possible revelation.