Catbox Contemporary is pleased to present, O, a show of new work by Nicholas Sullivan. Sullivan’s work reconstitutes everyday objects, art history, and pop-culture characters with a sardonic sci-fi sensibility. The resulting installation is as much about material and visual subversion as the artist’s concerns about control, labour and craft.
For, O, Sullivan transforms both the upper and lower gallery into incubators for visual and formal oddities, creating an overall observed stasis in the characters and objects contained within. His use of familiar objects and pop-icons like Snoopy, the Pink Panther, or a bar of butter allow the viewer to assert their visual and emotional response into the space. An overarching narrative about personal and collective experience is given a coded history through the mixed means of Sullivan’s installation.
The material effect of Sullivan’s work is mediated by a slow, thoughtful hand. The works in the the show employ a variety of mediums and procedures, spanning painting and sculpture, to carefully construct a series of imaginary perversions. On one side of the gallery, an inverted horse sits vertically on its head, balanced on giant black ears. The white horse, adorned with red collar and a gaping hole in its back, has been manipulated into a cruel simulacrum of Snoopy. The cartoonish visage represents Sullivans ability to bend the familiar into the strange, creating a quiet but uncomfortable mediation on the difference between contemplation and irreverence.