Debris of a narrative

Daor Contemporary is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Marlise Keith 

26.02.2020 – 27.03.2020

Keith’s choices of media is a juxtaposition of carefully considered found objects and materials. They are layered, poked, sewn, scratched, drawn on, washed over, sanded, folded and reworked with fascinating ‘characters/ creatures’ and thoughts emerging as a result. 

Marlise Keith, best known for her quirky, rich mixed-media collages, small scale sculpture (preferably referenced as 3D collages), large-scale drawings, micro-mosaics and mosaic sculpture which draw on a vast collection of subject matter. Inspired by life around her, dreams, disturbing news headlines, friends, memories, her persistent and sometimes debilitating migraines, mundanity, psychopathology, Pinterest, unarticulated thoughts and ponderings. Keith, rather than attempting to make sense of the world around her, documents its complexities and non-sense in a way that makes one feel uncomfortable, but puts a smile on one’s face.

Keith’s choices of media is a juxtaposition of carefully considered found objects and materials. They are layered, poked, sewn, scratched, drawn on, washed over, sanded, folded and reworked with fascinating ‘characters/ creatures’ and thoughts emerging as a result. Her work is playful, vibrant and fun but with a fascinating (and sometimes) disturbing twist, drawing the viewer in for closer inspection. Dark and witty at the same time.

“I dream vividly and sleepily scribble phrases down upon waking. I dreamt that I was talking to a photographer, explaining to him that his photographs were the “Debris of his narrative”. Kurt Vonnegut said “Practice any art … no matter how well or badly, not to get money and fame, but to experience becoming, to find out what’s inside you, to make your soul grow.” I often feel myself barred from knowing things – all of it. I get very frustrated when looking at kill holes in funerary pots, Outsider art – any art for that matter. Research and artists’ statements are not enough. The work is seeped with memory, family lore, life histories and experiences. I think we witness the growing of souls when we view art. We ‘become’ as much as we witness a recording of ‘becoming’.

I am tongue-tied when people ask me what my work is about. How do I explain this “Vonnegut-becoming”, the almost automatic process of making, often a mild surprise to me when it is done? I cannot vouch for 100% of the process and imagery. Turns out, my work is too, the debris of a narrative.”

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