This week Unit London is thrilled to start the New Year by announcing the opening of two solo exhibitions by Jason Seife and Jeremy Olson. These presentations will be the artists’ first solo shows with Unit London and we are extremely excited to bring the work of these two exceptional talents to the attention of our audience.
the likes of others
In his first solo exhibition with Unit London, Olson delves into the more obscure elements of human nature. The likes of others examines a world in which we are plunged simultaneously into a multiverse of connection and a contradictory sense of isolation. Olson presents a company of characters who appear to us as both alien and familiar, suggesting the notion of being human in an increasingly digitised society. These figures dwell in remote, itinerant and uncertain circumstances, which are enhanced by strange and often deteriorating environments.
Olson composes his figures of both familiar and otherworldly elements that unite to form different levels of recognisability. These surreal characters are therefore never identifiable on a personal level. Olson indicates that, as a result of this process of depersonalisation, the viewer is able to project their own individual and emotive connections onto his works. Olson’s figures remain oddly beguiling, reminiscent of illustrations from a children’s book. As such, they encourage the viewer to address the anxiety that we, as humans, all collectively feel through a moment that can be seen as playful, light and even hopeful.
A Small Spark vs a Great Forest
After embarking on a personal and creative journey through Iran, Syria and Turkey, Seife presents his first solo exhibition with Unit London, A Small Spark vs a Great Forest. At its core, the show is an exploration of the holistic nature of humanity, demonstrating Seife’s belief that all beings are trees that exist in the same forest. This notion has become all the more apparent to the artist since the onset of the pandemic, which spreads irrespective of societal and geographical divisions. Seife conveys this idea of cultural equality through connecting with his heritage, endeavouring to make traditional Middle Eastern artistic processes appealing to contemporary generations.
Seife’s artistic process comprises three stages. He starts by drafting a design inspired by Middle Eastern carpet makers; these designs often include byzantine motifs. The hand-drawn outline is then rendered in 3D to produce a relief-like reference image. Finally, Seife begins to methodically hand paint each section of the artwork. As such, A Small Spark vs a Great Forest demonstrates the blending of past artistic traditions and more contemporary approaches into unified and emotive artworks.