With a highly constructed and at times fetishistic approach to subjects, objects and materials, Torbjorn Rodland makes photographs that are formally acute, conceptually playful and psychologically evocative. Characterised by their double-edged allegories and underlying lyricism, Rodlandʼs staged scenarios ʻkeep you in the process of lookingʼ, simultaneously revealing layers of discomfort and pleasure.
This accompanying publication offers new and fresh lenses through which to view the artistʼs work.
Walead Beshtyʼs text, titled ʻSkin Flicksʼ, focuses on Rodlandʼs unique approach to surfaces, Julie Boukobza considers a number of works in the exhibition by building fictive narratives around them, whilst Diane Nguyen stages a surreal and winding narrative performance through Rodlandʼs image repertoire. Bob Nickasʼ essay, ʻFifteen Years Laterʼ draws upon the experience of looking at Rodlandʼs photographs and provides a visual map of their complex system of symbols, signs and gestures. Highlighting the poetics of image-making that is intrinsic to Rodlandʼs approach, the publication also includes newly-commissioned works by poets Stuart Krimko and Alice Notley.
Accompanies the exhibition Torbjorn Rodland: The Touch That Made You, 29 Sep – 19 Nov 2017, Serpentine Sackler Gallery, London, UK.