BEIRUT - Sfeir-Semler Gallery is happy to announce the opening on Thursday 2nd of August, 7-9 pm, of the solo show by the Mexican artist Gabriel Kuri.

 

Gabriel Kuri makes sculptures and installations concerned with contemporary consumer culture. Using unconventional found or industrial materials, such as plastic bags, vouchers and newspapers, his artwork addresses what is emerging from real life experience, in order to demonstrate how “ all materials (…) are socially branded and coded” and how our economic system shapes our day-to-day activities. In Gabriel Kuri’s playful world, everything is quantified, from basic events to exchanges between people.

 

The entire exhibition can be thought of as an extended alphabet of shapes of specific signs in a coding system. The works follow a systematic logic that unfolds into different forms. The process is governed both by geometric principles, as well as the immediateness of the materials employed. The show features an array of different materials such as painted steel, cast concrete, insulating roll, marble slabs and stainless steel boxes.  These all emphasize Kuri’s composition of rough urbanism with the details of daily life. 

 

The gallery space is starkly divided into two wings with freestanding works on the one side and hanging/leaning pieces on the other. This shows the artist’s regard for ordering principles in a systematic logic.

 

Influenced by Arte Povera and minimalist art, Kuri shows an interest in how density emerges from the balance between object, volume and space. The pairing of hard and soft shapes, as well as heavy and light materials, coming from direct first hand experience, shows how the artist invests into a vocabulary of forms, whilst never stirring away from the incidents of every day life. This is where it can be seen that the work is always imbued with a subtle social commentary.  

 

Gabriel Kuri (born in Mexico city, 1970), lives and works in Mexico city and Brussels. A student of Gabriel Orozco’s workshop from1987 to1991, Gabriel Kuri is renowned for being one of the leading artists of the young Mexican generation, along with Abraham Cruzvillegas and Damián Ortega. He has exhibited in many important international venues such as: the South London Gallery (2011); the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston (2011); Kunstverein Freiburg (2010); Kunstverein Bielefeld (2010); Blaffer Art museum, University of Houston (2010); Museion Bolzano (2010); and Kunstverein Hamburg (2008).

 

He has also taken part in group shows such as the Venice Biennale 2011(Giardini Italian Pavillion curated by Bice Curiger, Zurich), Berlin Biennale 2008, and the Venice Biennale 2003 (Dreams and Conflicts - The Viewer's Dictatorship curated by Francesco Bonami).


The exhibition runs from the 2nd of August until the 17thof November 2012. For more information, please contact beirut@sfeir-semler.com