No Light Without Shadows
Kiwha Lee, Alex Puz, Shira Toren

November 5 - December 23, 2022
Thierry Goldberg is pleased to present No Light Without Shadows, an exhibition of works by Kiwha Lee, Alex Puz, and Shira Toren. The exhibition opens on November 5th, with a reception from 6-8pm and will run through December 23, 2022.

Shifting between improvisation and memory, the works in No Light Without Shadows expose aspects of the psychological experience of space. Working in distinctive abstract practices, the artists collectively push pigments, textures, lines, and forms to uncharted viewpoints, all the while reveling in the precarious balance between darkness and light.

Drawing from a hybrid history of mark making, Kiwha Lee blurs the boundaries between bodies and objects. Lee’s decentralized compositions are comparable to landscapes with texture, color, and form, dictating elements of spatial depth. Light filters through shapes and patterns creating a certain fervent activity on the surface of her works. Pattern is a tool for Lee, inserted methodically into places either by hand or through the mimicry of ancient Asian printmaking techniques. In Multiplicity of Eddies, 2022, expansive washes of purple and blue spill over the canvas. Patterns and motifs undulate throughout the work, simultaneously building up and breaking down over areas of the work’s surface. The work is illuminated through these alternating moments of coverage and visibility producing a rhythmic sensation of pulsating light. There is an atmospheric quality in Lee’s works, a substantial weightlessness that appears to flow intermittently between internal and external environments.

Alex Puz creates compositions that palpitate with static vibration. Puz builds up the surface of his works with a series of systematically stacked lines and controlled color gradients. Working between timing and touch, Puz engages new layers of paint in displaced arrangements, generating compositions that seem to shimmer, billow and flow. In Neural Moonlight, 2022, intricate lines of blue and green are methodically weaved together over a pale lilac background. His colors are arranged in sequences, their relationship to one another creating an overall mood and tempo. As the controlled variations of hues, values, and saturation peek through the uppermost layers of paint, an illusion of shadowed movement falls across the work. Puz’s works are precise, yet organic, the subtle twist of a line or a break in the preordained pattern creates indispensable moments of openness and pause. Puz’s amplified effects of minute movement, though constrained by predetermined limitations, produce randomized ripples of uninhibited forms that lure the eye into unexpected places.  

Highlighting the innate tension between presence and absence, Shira Toren’s works echo memories of constructed landscapes. Toren develops the exterior of her works through alternating layers of venetian plaster, graphite powder and mineral pigments. Ebbing between additive and subtractive practices, Toren masks certain layers while peeling away others, lending to an asperous array of textures and pigments. The Exchange, 2022 exhibits a smooth graphite surface that has become inscribed with the dual actions of construction and deconstruction. Monochromatic tones play upon the work’s surface as manifestations of a fossilized series of serendipitous excavations. Emanating gradations of light, these subtle interjections teeter between bursts of energy and instances of stillness in their glimpse of what may lie beneath. Toren’s works are self-referential in that their ever changing dynamic structure consciously exposes foundational histories which can neither be easily erased nor forgotten.

Kiwha Lee (b. Seoul, South Korea) lives and works in New York, NY. She holds an MFA in Studio Art from Hunter College and a Bachelors of Design from both the University of New South Wales College of Fine Arts and the University of Technology Sydney. Lee has an upcoming solo exhibition at Denny Dimin Gallery and has had previous solo exhibitions at NPE Gallery, Singapore and theflatspace, Singapore. Lee has participated in  group exhibitions at Fergus McCaffrey, New York, NY; Ortega y Gasset Projects, Brooklyn, NY; Mother Gallery, Beacon, NY; and Chan + Hori Contemporary, Singapore, among others.

Alex Puz (b. 1989, Long Beach, CA) lives and works in New Haven, CT. He holds an MFA in Painting/Printmaking from Yale School of Art and a BFA in Studio Art from Hunter College. Puz has had a solo exhibition at the Jennifer Terzian Gallery, Litchfield, CT. His work has been featured in group exhibitions at Jeffrey Deitch, New York, NY; MOCA Westport, Westport, CT; Underdonk, Brooklyn, NY; and MOMA PS1, Queens, NY, among others.

Shira Toren (b. 1957, Tel Aviv, Israel) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She holds a BFA from the Pratt Institute. Toren has had solo exhibitions at Sweet Lorraine Gallery, Brooklyn, NY; Six Depot, Berkshires, MA; NYU Kimmel Gallery, New York, NY; and J Klaynberg Gallery, New York, NY. She has participated in group exhibitions at Front Room Gallery, New York, NY; Katonah Museum of Art, Katonah, NY; Bernay Fine Art, Great Barrington, MA; Craven Contemporary Art Gallery, Kent, CT; and Hammond Museum, North Salem, NY among others. .

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