COMMUNIQUE october 2018
In his works The New Real, Lans King introduces the “reality (art) star”
For his new series of works “The New Real”, Lans King hybrids his painted canvases with videos. The videos are shown on screens that range from old TVs to bespoke flat screens monitors to the latest smartphone. The paring of the paintings with the screen(s) form an unusual diptychs/triptychs. In some cases the videos are projected directly onto the canvases or can be viewed in augmented reality. The painting often use images from the videos as source materials, resulting in a dialogue or clash between the two.
The paintings are combined with a variety of videos: The first type are “reality tv” style videos, excerpts from recordings of his daily life as an artist. Some of these videos feature his collaborations with the prodigious artist Anaïs de Lys. A second type can be described as a kind of “making-of” sequence for the painting itself in which we see the artist actually making the work. In others, he detours the advertising format to create a 30 second spot for the painting. Finally, some videos are just TV noise, test patterns, or “technical difficulties” place holders. By juxtaposing his paintings with videos, the artist is challenging our point of focus between the two.
The reality TV style videos are particularly relevant at the moment. This type of content is now easily and widely distributed to all type of screens. Reality TV has become an influential force in contemporary culture to the point producing of “iconic” figures. It has affected everything from fashion to sexuality to our politics. As stated by Lans King, “All of this content is amplified by the backlit screens which renders a kind of “glossy” reality distortion that we call the hyperreal.”
Lans King references the ideas of the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard who suggested that the real no longer exists. Instead we have layers of representation of representations that ultimately become simulations. With the omnipresence of electronic media, which now includes video games, virtual reality and photoshopped social media images, how do we maintain a sense of the real?
This new work is part of Lans King’s ongoing art practice which examines humanity as we live between the real and the virtual, the analog and digital. His previous “synthetic” paintings combined algorithms and digital printing with manual painting and drawing techniques. These new painting-video hybrids take his work to another dimension by connecting the painted image with the moving image.
Born in St. Vincent, British Antilles. Lans King was raised and educated in New York. He studied cognitive science at University of Rochester, New York. He later worked in digital media and communications whilst developing his art practice. Lans’ work includes paintings, videos and sculpture. He lives and works between Paris, London and New York.
Contact and request for interviews:
James Currin, Publicist