his fourth solo exhibition at Galerie Gabriele Rivet, Charles Worthen
assembles new sculptures that radiate both a formal elegance and a bizarre
allure. Though the sculptures are abstract one makes associations, not
only through the idea-rich titles they´ve been given. When creating
his pieces, Worthen fully explores the possibilities of each material
he uses and is able to easily mold these synthetic materials into unusual
variations of form. Behind the fluidity of sculptural experimentation
and the poetically bizarre, are feelings of naturalness, material decay,
diversity of change, and narrative potential, all accentuated by the enhanced
use of the artificial.
Born in Boston in 1958, Charles Worthen lived for many years in Japan
and has been in Cologne since 1991. The play-fulness of his objects, the
joy in color usage, and his fascination with synthetic materials, derive
from Japanese and American culture. For his Cologne exhibition, Worthen
will arrange a sculptural group which looks like a collection of biological
curiousities, containing whimsical forms inspired by the diversity of
deep-sea forms, invertebrates, and the microscopic world. He has developed
organic structures with a highly surreal character: amoeba-like bodies,
which seem to take on a life of their own. Previously, the surface nature
and color of Worthen´s sculptures had been determined by the materials
of the sculptures themselves, however, he now provides his zoomorphic,
tentacled forms with a covering of black and bright red pompons to create
a furry shell. The tactile and optical stimuli compete with one another.
Aside from these furry sculptures are two larger works that recall giant
molecular structures. Only through close inspection can it be seen that
one is actually formed out of countless colorful plastic buoys and the
other from gymnastic balls.
Worthen, born 1958 in
Boston, MA, lives since 1991 in Cologne.