Derek Lerner

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Derek Lerner's obsessive mark making builds dual perspectives organically as he expresses his attempt to reconcile conflicting feelings about human impact on our environment, including his own. Looking both biological and man-made, micro and macro, his lyrical compositions embody dualities, "…while in many ways my work is a reaction to over-consumption and environmental politics, the drawings themselves are yet another "thing" added to the world, made no less with materials that are potentially damaging to the environment." Although Lerner's work emphasizes the destructive nature of man, his work is evidence that beauty can be found in what humans make as well as what we destroy; and that it is perhaps unavoidable for humans to create without consuming at the same time.

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Robert Henry Contemporary is pleased to present Mapping the Equivocal featuring the work of Phillip Buntin, Derek Lerner and Robert Walden. A map is a representation of space or place, or of phenomena as they exist in space. Maps project a three-dimensional space on a 2-D plane, usually much smaller than the actual space being mapped. The best maps are often considered to be the most accurate ones, however, the assumptions, intentions, biases and preferences of the mapmaker subjectify every map. Maps convey nonlinear and simultaneous knowledge. In a single glance a viewer can tell what’s going on over the whole map at a single moment in time, a Gestalt. The three artists in this exhibition use what could be considered “thematic maps” to explore ideas related to hermeneutics, biology, environmental degradation and ontology.

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Derek Lerner layers countless well refined marks, lines, and shapes to create complex systems that look as if we are peering through a microscope and a telescope at the same time. After 15 years of working, this group of 10 ink on paper drawings (all 2011) constitute Lerner's latest body of work, stemming from his contradictory feelings about urban sprawl, over-development and humanity as a virus.

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