ART BASEL HONG KONG 2017
21 - 25 Mar, 2017. Hong Kong
Art Basel Hong Kong 2017
March 21-25 2017
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
1 Expo Dr, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Taking mural painting as a departure, Monkkonen has developed a series of murals miniaturized to the scale of domestic wall works; building facades scaled down and painted in mural-like fashion detailed with miniature tiled roofing and air vents. Establishing a level of theatricality by employing building facades standing in as painting, the
additional layer of the ‘painted’ mural acts as a “play within a play” functioning to (over)emphasize painting’s own objecthood and theatrical nature. Drawing various correlations, from the formalism of facade design to the inner logic and solipistic nature of formalist painting, to real estate and art as both being indicators of the unique bubble prone nature of contemporary global capitalism, Pentti Monkkonen’s ‘paintings’ offer a slippery duplicity within the dense
landscape of painting.
In addition, as part of the overall presentation, the artist presents several new sculptures. Parallel to the paintings these sculptures exist as domestically scaled down versions of a now common part of Los Angeles’s landscape, the “cell tower palm tree”. Intended as a way for phone companies to camouflage the hardware necessary to provide maximum cellular coverage while being minimally obstructive to the natural landscape, these cell towers disguised as palm trees
emerged as an object of strange incongruousness, standing out rather than blending into the landscape it poorly strived to mimic. Not only miniaturized, Monkkonen has altered his versions to function appropriately, as floor lamps intended to brighten the space of any domestic setting.