Alexis Marguerite Teplin - He, Ho, HA, hmmm . . . (2 stars)

Inflexible, unsubtle and flat exhibition of unapologetically abstract paint and sculpture works

Alexis Marguerite Teplin - He, Ho, HA, hmmm . . .

Alexis M Teplin’s second exhibition at Mary Mary gallery is an eclectic display of rough and unapologetically abstract works. With heavy modernist styling, the show consists of patchwork painting works, unstretched and impenetrable, and lumpy floor-based sculptures like papier-mâché. The show feels inflexible, unsubtle and flat, allowing for little more interaction than bare surface colour and shapes. Teplin describes the works as having a figurative or at least symbolic meaning, with each piece standing for words in the title of the show, as a laugh and a contemplation, but it does little and still it feels devoid of personality. The art historical references within the work point to high modernism, of Pollock perhaps and Robert Morris, and through coarse collaged parts in the painted works, to Oscar Wilde’s Salome, to decadence and excess, to facile materialism and glitter.

Overall the exhibition is opaque and obtuse in extreme, an abstract surface which somehow leaves you wanting more. It seems Templin is aware of the aversive nature of the work, playing with it and arranging it, deliberately so. But one can’t help feel frustrated wondering why. He ho ha, hmmm … perhaps not.

Mary Mary, Glasgow, until Sat 13 Apr.

Alexis Marguerite Teplin: He, Ho, HA, hmmm …

New abstract paintings and sculptural works from California-born, London-based artist, incorporating found objects (prints by Aubrey Beardsley) in a re-modelling of art history.


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