fbpx Biennale Arte 2022 | Kaari Upson
La Biennale di Venezia

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Kaari Upson

1970 – 2021, USA


  • TUE - SUN
    23/04 > 25/09
    11 AM - 7 PM

    27/09 > 27/11
    10 AM - 6 PM
  • Central Pavilion
  • Admission with ticket

Kaari Upson is an artist from California who explored the psychological and inter- personal dimensions of the American familial experience. Upson is best known for her sprawling graphite drawings and eerie casts in silicone, resin, pigment, and charcoal – painted and distorted sculptures of furniture, figures, and domestic objects. Her compositions are abject, disquieting, and all-too-human, with sculptures slumping, sagging, and leaning against walls and corners as if to lament the psychological exhaustion of their genesis. Upson’s recent series Portrait (Vain German) (2020–2021) began with portraits that she painted in thick impasto and other materials on miniature canvases. From there, she used 3D modeling techniques to create molds and casts, onto which she painted layers of urethane, resins, and pigments. Possibly an allusion to her mother/herself, frequent subjects for her sculptures and videos, the complex dimensional paintings materialise in fleshy pinks, haunting blues, and fluorescent yellows. The paintings’ visages stare out as if from another realm, oscillating from ghoulish to skeletal to serene, from fragmentary to abstract to entirely obliterated, perhaps a meditation on sickness and the body’s eventual deterioration.

Melanie Kress

Central Pavilion
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Biennale Arte
Biennale Arte