Rae Klein: The Comfort in Calamity
September 16-October 29, 2022
Jessica Silverman is pleased to announce Rae Klein: The Comfort in Calamity, on view September 16 through October 29, 2022 in the gallery’s second-floor space. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery presenting ten new, large-scale oil paintings that are indicative of her practice examining power, opulence and memory through a deft combination of the surreal and the ordinary. In her paintings, Klein often suspends objects in space, recalling the compositional strangeness of Salvador Dali and Max Ernst. Playing with background and foreground wields both the precision and softness of her brush.
Klein’s new paintings notably feature curtains as an added conceptual perimeter, revitalizing the quotidian through the use of dramaturgical elements. In a neat juxtaposition with the crimson velvet curtains of the gallery’s second-floor space, the paintings depict delicate landscapes. Harkening back to 16th century landscape painting in which the pastoral became a subject in itself, Klein’s use of proscenium-style curtains transforms a universal environment into a fantastical scene. Similar to her use of household objects, these paintings disrupt the conventions of the picture plane to harness moments when the familiar turns uncanny. It is here where the artist enacts creation, detaching her subjects from their origins and inviting the viewer to peer into new worlds where reality is not yet fully crystallized.
Using product imagery sourced from e-Bay or old Sears catalogs, Klein imbues everyday objects with an iconographic quality through her painterly treatment of transparency and opacity. Candles, table settings and seashells take on a ghostly appearance, suggesting the discovery of discarded heirlooms. Indeed the artist situates forgotten markers of time in tension with feelings of permanence, secrecy and the afterlives of objects.
Rae Klein (b. 1995, Holland, MI) graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2017 with a BFA in Painting. In 2021, she enjoyed her first solo exhibition titled Waiting in the Field at The Valley, Taos, New Mexico followed by Low Voice Out Loud in 2022 at Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles. Recent group exhibitions include End of Eden, Galerie Wolfsen, Aalborg, Denmark; Todos es de Color, The Curator’s Room, Amsterdam; Paper, BEERS, London; I Have My Eye On You, Everyday Gallery, Antwerp; and When Shit Hits The Fan Again, Guts Gallery, London. Klein lives and works in Michigan.