Viennese artist Felix Malnig presents work studying the social and cultural importance of urban architecture and city planning, particularly of sites characterized by rapid development. Chinese skyscrapers and General Motors office parks are rendered shiny and new in slick chrome hues, but painted hastily, with dripping brushstrokes and splotched with spray paint, paralleling the rapid developments seen in Detroit and more recently China. Similarly, Malnig’s “Garage” paintings on paper, sparse renderings of shadows found in vacant parking lots, command a symbolically significant use of surface texture and medium. Both “House” drawings are decidedly warm and charming in relationship to the other work in the gallery, but still reveal a cynical perspective on rapid development of the suburban single family home. Also included is “D,” a video loop from the elevated train in Detroit, an endless chronicle of the decay to be found in the formerly shining center of industry. With care for semiotic texture and surfaces enriched by association, Malnig reveals the effects of metastasized industrial development on the urban landscape. (Lisa Larson-Walker)
Through Feb 12 at Devening Projects + Editions, 3039 West Carroll.