September 18, 2020

Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

Alex Dodge marries technology with art in his practice and philosophy, creating works that speak to the balance between authentic human connection and the empowerment of technology
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Galleries

About the Exhibit 

Alex Dodge’s exhibit at Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery in the Lower East Side, New York, is on view until October 17th, 2020.

Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

I was introduced to Dodge’s work at the Independent Art Fair this past year, and I was intrigued by the textures/patterns he creates in his work by using stencils and paint. 

Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“In a typical process, he creates a 3D computer model of an object of his choosing then digitally covers it with patterns in a way that resembles draped cloth. He then cuts stencils to replicate the final on-screen image, placing them against canvases and filling in the color by hand with thick dabs of oil paint. The results, therefore, also blend skills across time: Dodge is painting in the digital age, but the last steps of his process also pay tribute to Katazome, the centuries-old Japanese dying tradition of applying a paste to fabric through a stencil.” - Hyperallergic (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

Dodge’s subject matter for this show falls into two categories, “The Synthetic” and “The Mystical.” 

“Those that are Synthetic – closer to “real” – are more reflective of human behavior and emotion, while those that are Mystical allude to characters who employ magic, or have the power to use mysterious tools.” (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“These characters speak to our time, where humanity now looks to technology to solve problems, build personal relationships, or transfer information, while many people still experience a yearning for something authentic or meaningful.” (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

Dodge has also implemented a new technique of creating a dark blue-to-white gradient ground, inspired by a Japanese technique called “Bokashi.” 

Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“Dodge learned [“Bokashi.”] from traditional Ukiyo-e masters at the Adachi Hanga workshop while living in Japan.” (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“Historically in woodblock prints, this fade allowed for a deliberate depth to permeate the image, yet the darkness is ambiguous enough to offer the figures a presence, as though spotlit on stage.”  (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

Another thing that I find so refreshing and unique about Alex Dodge are his views on art and technology, and how he utilizes technology to create his art. 

“Learning to code has really informed my studio practice especially the way I approach physical process. I use so many digital tools to make work. The paintings I make often use 3D scanning, physics simulations, 3D modeling, an array of imaging and vector graphics software, CNC and other digital fabrication machinery. I even wrote a program to estimate how much paint I need for a painting!” - Alex Dodge for Arteviste (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“Fundamentally I feel that the arts and sciences are doing something very similar” Alex Dodge for Arteviste (source
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend

About the Artist - Alex Dodge 

Alex Dodge is an American artist that lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. 

“Dodge’s work has often explored the relationship between technology and human experience in varying degrees of subtlety.” (source)
Alex Dodge at Klaus von Nichtssagend
“The Brooklyn-based artist has for years been refining a distinct technique that produces mesmerizing works that dance between painting, sculpture, and textile — their surfaces ripple with busy and vividly colored painted patterns that seem to swath mysterious objects in various fabrics; thick gobs of paint cling to areas of the canvas as if squeezed out like thick frosting or Easy Cheese.” - Hyperallergic (source

Dodge received his BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design, and a MPS in Interactive Telecommunications from New York University

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