The words text, textile and texture all derive from the latin verb, and title of the show, “TEXERE”. Meaning to weave, to plait or to construct with elaborate care, it is an all-encompassing word that represents the woven materiality and immateriality existing in the mesh of Theis Wendt’s work. “TEXERE” also alludes to the wooden textures that are multiplied and mirrored in the gallery’s space.
Using a wide range of both organic and synthetic materials, Theis Wendt’s creative process combines sculpture, installation and post-photography. Through digitally rendered photographs he explores the image as space, surface and means of communication.
Confronted with a context of creation in the post-truth era, flooded with a constant stream of information, images generated by artificial intelligence and Deepfake technology, Wendt plays with the notions of truthfulness and authenticity. As Walter Benjamin had already predicted in his 1935 essay The work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction, digital reproduction processes affect our sensory perception of physical materiality and the aura that images emanate. The illusory nature, recreated by numerical means, becomes a second-degree nature.
However, virtual realities and tangible realities coexist in the artist’s universe. His works affirm that our relationship to the world and our understanding of reality have been considerably modified by a radical change in the tools with which we access them. The Internet and screens have not only broadened our horizons, they have shifted the very same axis from which we contemplate them. Thus, in the digital abyss exacerbated by omnipresent technology, Theis Wendt exhibits the rather romantic quality of man-made sublimity.
It is these interstices that the works of the Void series inhabit. The figures of the window and the frame are recurring pictorial elements in the artist’s pieces. The frames in Void seemingly shape-shift into wooden cubes. But these wooden cubes have no end, or at least not an apparent one. Therefore they transform into mural portals transporting us into alternative realities. The void evoked by the title is embodied by the infinity of wood that also suggests a mysterious, dark, and seductive beyond. Real space is enlarged to make room for doubt and speculation but also for curiosity and contemplation.
Born in 1981 in Copenhagen, Theis Wendt graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. Wendt’s works have been the subject of numerous exhibitions, including at the San Diego Art Institute in San Diego; the Brandts Sculpture Triennial in Odense; and the Torrance Art Museum in Los Angeles.