For his second solo exhibition at Friedman Benda gallery, British artist Jonathan Trayte shares the surreal MelonMelonTangerine. Trayte reflected on a recent road trip through the western United States, translating his outsider perspective of the American landscape and pointing out how we perceive and use natural resources.
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Color is so important as a means of persuasion, persuading people to consume in particular kinds of ways, or in appealing to specific social groups. I create synthetic painted veneers and compositions of materials that either reflect or distort this language; they’re like skins of paint or textures that create a kind of chameleon appearance.
Trayte’s memories of sedimentary rock formations, Joshua trees, lichens, silver cholla cacti and prickly pears allowed him to reimagine these natural forms as highly stylized pieces of art. The otherworldly botanical garden he’s made is a layered collage of colors, materials, forms, textures and techniques that won’t soon be forgotten.
MelonMelonTangerine will be on view at Friedman Benda in New York from February 15th through March 13th, 2021.
Photos courtesy Friedman Benda and Jonathan Trayte.