‘Labour and Wait’ is David Roth’s third solo exhibition at Dürst Britt & Mayhew. The exhibition brings together various distinct bodies of work, which continually play with concepts of construction and deconstruction as well as with the performative and sculptural potential painting can possess.
The first room of the gallery is dedicated to Roth’s ‘Ottenstein’ project, which consists of a video and an installation of two canvases primed with glow in the dark paint. These ‘paintings’ served as a raft and a tent during a hike the artist made through the countryside of the Lower Austrian region of Ottenstein. The video documents the arduous and absurd task of dragging two large canvases through the wilderness.
The second room gives the stage to a series of large ‘Flower Paintings’. The name might suggest demure depictions of flower still lifes, but it actually refers to the technique involved. Instead of using brushes the artist employed real flowers to bring colour and forms to the canvas. This results in dynamic abstract surfaces which have a tinge of action painting in that they show the force of the artist’s bodily movement.
The final room of the gallery is filled with three brightly coloured sculptures. These sculptures, titled ‘Brains’, nevertheless have all the trappings of a painting: a bearer, colour, and even a wooden framework. The trestles which are supporting the heaps of loose painted textiles are in fact made of modificated stretcher bars. The body of a ‘Brain‘ is made from layer after layer of paintings cut from their frame, fabrics used as a palette or for colour testing, and rags employed to clean brushes or the studio floor.
The room also contains Roth’s ‘Mud Paintings’ project, consisting of a video and three large canvases painted with mud. In the video we see the canvases hanging from trees in a forest exposed to the weather for a period of eight months and actually becoming part of the environment. We even see animals passing by and having a ‘look’ at the paintings.
David Roth (1985) graduated from the Academy of fine arts Vienna in the class of Daniel Richter. Recent solo and duo exhibitions include ’Raumbilder’ at GrafZyxFoundation in Neulengbach, ‘Method Acting’ at Galeria Alegria in Barcelona, ‘Imagine’ at Bildraum 01 in Vienna, ’Augensex’ at Dürst Britt & Mayhew, ‘remember’ at New Jörg in Vienna. Recent group exhibitions include ‘Landscapes’ at Museum Schloss Moyland, ‘Earth, a collective landscape’ at AkzoNobel Art Foundation, ‘Stretch Release’ at Dürst Britt & Mayhew, ‘Vielfalt’ at Landesmuseum Burgenland, ‘Imago Mundi’ at Belvedere Winterpalais in Vienna and ‘Plus jamais seul’ at Standards in Rennes. Work by Roth is held in private and public collections including the Landesmuseum Burgenland, the AkzoNobel Art Foundation, the Aksenov Family Foundation and the Luciano Benetton collection. David Roth lives and works in Vienna, Austria.
This year two of Roth’s video works have been shown in the group exhibition ‘Landscapes’ at Museum Schloss Moyland in Germany. One of Roth’s Flower Paintings is currently on view in the group exhibition ‘Earth, a collective landscape’ at the AkzoNobel Art Foundation in Amsterdam.