With Sighs Too Deep for Words

27 May 2022 - 24 Jul 2022

Lennart Lahuis’ third solo exhibition at Dürst Britt & Mayhew brings together three distinct bodies of works, in which present, past, and future appear to be collapsing into each other and different technological eras converge.

Firstly there is ‘Astromelancholia’, an astronomical clock that connects various contemporary images with the course of the planets in our solar system. The photographic images that are shown in relation to this clock are cut in four concentric circles and contain marks that make it possible to use them as functional dials from which astronomical information can be read when mounted on the mechanism. When attached to the clock the image will only return to its original starting position in 18,6 years. The clock is accompanied by a comprehensive manual prepared by graphic design studio Our Polite Society.

Three of the dials represent details from the strongest digital imaging sensor for astronomical purposes that has ever been developed. This sensor will find its home in the yet to be built Vera C. Rubin telescope on the Cerro Pachón ridge in North-Central Chile. This ‘camera’ will capture the largest and most detailed images of deepspace ever recorded.

In the middle of the exhibition space the viewer encounters an installation consisting of a water boiler, a vessel, a trashbin and a barrel. These various ‘containers’ produce words from water vapour that form the sentence “when is it / that we / feel change / in the air”. The words are only legible for a short time and then evaporate, after which the words are produced again. It conveys a feeling of writing with clouds, as well as commenting on the sudden and opaque shifts that continue to occur within our societies.

Additionally Lahuis realised various new ‘wax-works’, made with found photographic material from frames, printing equipment and/or calendars. These generic images are printed on the backboard of the frame and are subsequently covered with a layer of wax and paper on glass that is placed in front of the image. This specific material gesture suspends the immediate intelligibility of the images on view. They are frozen in a moment between appearance and disappearance, between absence and presence.

Lennart Lahuis received his BFA from Artez Institute of the Arts in Zwolle, Netherlands. From 2011 to 2013 he was a resident at De Ateliers in Amsterdam. Recent solo exhibitions include Those Hours That Have Lost Their Clock at Galeria Jaqueline Martins in Brussels, BE (2022); Constant Escapement at the Fries Museum in Leeuwarden, NL (2019); Land Slides at the National Museum of Ceramics Princessehof in Leeuwarden, NL (2019) and Le Mal du Pays at Dürst Britt & Mayhew Gallery in The Hague, NL (2019). Recent group exhibitions include Voorlopers at Park Paleis Soestdijk, NL (2022); In the Age of Post-Drought at CID Grand-Hornu in Boussu, BE (2021); CODA Paper Art at CODA Museum in Apeldoorn, NL (2021); When stones Awake at Platform POST in Nijmegen, NL (2021); Nabeeld at PARK in Tilburg, NL (2020); Common Ground at AKZO Nobel Art Foundation in Amsterdam, NL (2019); and Recent Acquisitions at Stedelijk Museum Schiedam, NL (2018).

In 2021 Lahuis won the FPT Sustainable Art Award in Turin, Italy and in 2015 the Royal Award for Contemporary Painting as well as the Piket Art Prize, both in the Netherlands.

Lennart Lahuis would like to thank Toine Daelmans for developing the technical components of Astromelancholia; Our Polite Society for designing the manual of Astromelancholia; and Mondriaan Fund for their generous support of his projects.



Click to read a specially commissioned essay by Tim Roerig

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