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Brendan Fowler at Rental Fall 2009

October 25� December 6, 2009


RECEPTION: Sunday, October 25, 2009, 6-9PM

RENTAL is proud to announce its first solo exhibition of new works by artist Brendan
Fowler entitled Brendan Fowler at Rental Fall 2009. The opening reception will be
held on Sunday October 25 from 6 to 9pm. A special surprise performance, as part of
Performa 09, will take place in the gallery on Sunday November 15, from 1 to 6pm.
Initially best known for his performances, and increasingly for his object based works,
Brendan Fowler at Rental, Fall 2009 continues the artist's growth into the sculptural
territory of an interdisciplinary practice. Framed photographs and silkscreened prints
crash in violent compositions that Fowler began as an attempt to capture the percussive
rhythms of free jazz. As an undergrad, Fowler studied free jazz alongside printmaking,
and now, more than twelve years later, he marries the two out of the hope that free jazz,
as a form, will inform his practice and serve as an opening in his work. After a
considerable hiatus from his focus, it is a rhythm, which has, in recent years, come back
to his work in earnest.
Although never conceived as such, Fowler's long running project, BARR, was often
referred to in terms of motivational speaking set to music. Just as his performance and
sound works were heart-on-sleeve biographical, so, too, is his object based work
entirely personal. This show functions largely as a memoir of the current� Fowler's life
circa 2009â�� as it unpacks itself in real time.  Actual "cancelled" performance tour
posters formed the departure point for his contributions to a four person show at Rental
in the Spring. While in the current show a series of further negated versions of these
same posters form the basis for the work. Fowler plays with time and the physical
memory of space as he considers the new works specific to the same walls where his
works in the group show hung. His day job is at a magazine, and the cement blocks
which hold up the show's sculptural centerpiece are cast from the boxes in which the
magazines are shipped. Many of the works in the show are incidentally photographed in
various stages of progress in his studio.
Increasingly, Fowler is developing games around the transparency of his content. Two
of the primary visual elements are flowers, which Fowler has inserted as "the
penultimate, universally un-specific signifier for aesthetic 'beauty;'" and, standing in
stark and hyper specific contrast, a reproduction of an unspecified interview in which
Fowler explains, verbatim, most of the references in the show. His dialog is
simultaneously opening up as it narrows in. For the first time in his work we see
cancellation strategies which inch at pure abstraction, but given the work's stated formal
starting reference of improvised music, the same abstractions could be taken as
signifiers for a "crash" or "tonal wash." Pure gesture functions as a specific reference
unto itself, and Fowler complicates the conversation a step further.
Brendan Fowler (b. 1978) has exhibited in solo exhibitions with Rivington Arms in New
York and 2nd Cannons Publications in Los Angeles. He was included in The New
Museum�s inaugural Triennial, Younger Than Jesus, earlier this year. He has performed
at The Kitchen and New Museum in New York, David Kordansky Gallery in Los
Angeles, at the Frieze and NADA art fairs and at countless rock clubs, independent DIY
venues and independent spaces internationally.
For more information please contact RENTAL director Philip Deely at info@rental-gallery.com or 212-
608-6002. The gallery is open Wednesday through Sunday from 12-6PM.