Taro Suzuki | Snakes on a Plane
May 30 - June 30, 2019
High Noon is proud to present Taro Suzuki’s solo debut with the gallery, Snakes on a Plane. Suzuki’s introduction to the New York art world began when he was recruited in 8th grade to work on various light shows at a venue, making slides with crystal liquid material and dyes which would then be live-projected across the stage. At the same time, he was introduced to the vases of Duchamp, where the optical and conceptual collided. From these beginnings, the utilization of performance and light as media have always been present in Suzuki’s work, although both media are explored in their relation to objects. Whether expressed as textures created from raking pigment across the concrete of his studio floor, meticulously generated centripetal fluorescent circles, or the manipulation of a metal surface, Suzuki’s unification of gesture and perception into a corporeal object can be best described as “minimal action painting.”
The works in Snakes on a Plane are a continuation of a decades-long practice interested in the collision of art and science; for Suzuki, working with optics became a metaphor for scientism. His works have always been created in a post-conceptual context in which the optics themselves are the concept, using familiar, or even economical means to great effect to create his visual abacus, examining the viewers expectations and threshold of visual phenomena. Keeping true to this, the works in Snakes on a Plane require the viewer to consider the composition as a whole; the optical component cannot be compartmentalized. Crafted from re-purposed honeycomb aluminum aircraft panels, the work speaks to the rebellious and genuinely curious nature of his creative approach while eliminating traditional media. Transcending the material, Suzuki brings his own invention of methodology to a striking and mysterious resolve.
Gesture is only present from the play of light on surface, making the act of seeing into a conscious activity--- our expectations betray us as the gesture, illumination, and space of the work become seemingly illogical. At the same time, the line quality emerging from the metal is familiar, intuitive, forcing us to confront the space between the rational and irrational. The illuminated aspect of the work bears reference to Pablo Picasso’s light drawings or James Turrell’s holograms wherein visual phenomena, fleeting and illusive, move closer to object as a concrete record of an ephemeral experience.
Taro Suzuki lives and works in New York City and attended The School of Visual Arts and Cooper Union. As is true of many creatives immersed in the Metropolis, Suzuki’s artistic energy emerged in multiple disciplines over the course of his development. While he was lead singer for the No Wave band “Youthinasia,” he gained notoriety for his light installations. Harnessing the power of questions and contrasts in traditional optics, he has used painting and sculpture to further pursue his interest in visual dissonance. A two time Pollack-Krasner Grant recipient, Suzuki’s work has been exhibited at MoMA, NY and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. He has been reviewed in publications such as The New York Times, Art in America, the New Yorker, the Village Voice, and Art Forum.