October 24, 2013, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
UNIX Gallery is pleased to present Panic Room, an exhibition of new paintings
by Justin Bower on view at UNIX New York from October 24 through
December 10, 2013. An opening reception will be held on October 24 from 6
to 8 PM.
Featured in Modern Painters as one of the “100 Best Fall Shows 2013”, Panic
Room focuses on the destabilization of the human subject and problematizes
how we define ourselves in this digital and virtual age. Complex backgrounds
referencing optical art relate to a certain kind of “code” and control the subject
in Bower’s paintings. His art interrogates the autonomy bestowed upon us by the ideals of Enlightenment and
opens a dialogue documenting the trauma that technology has on the contemporary human. In an age where infinite
data is comprised of replicable code, the works confront the viewer with a radical question of “What am I?”
Bower uses paint as an instrument of dissection and inquiry. Functioning as a biological boundary from externalized
technologies, flesh acts as a complex veneer. The artist shows this destabilization through the augmentation
of features - multiple eyes, spliced noses, melting mouths - and playing on the non-fixed features of the
face and the hallucinatory effects of art, to engage the viewer and awaken them from a techno- slumber. Bower
presents his subjects as ontological enigmas, and in his own words, aims to “have the viewer experience the
instability reflected by the subjects’ threat of vanishing”.
Born in San Francisco in 1975, Bower earned a degree in Art and Philosophy from the University of Arizona in
1998 and a MFA from Claremont Graduate University in 2010. Bower’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions
at Ace Gallery Beverly Hills (2010) and has been shown at galleries, museums, and international art
fairs including Torrance Art Museum, LA (2013 and 2010), LA Contemporary Art Fair (2011 and 2013), LA Art
Platform (2011), Art Aspen (2013), and Art Southampton (2013).
The artist has won and been nominated for several grants and awards, among them The Feitelson Fellowship
Grant (2010) and The Joan Mitchell Award (2010). Bower’s artwork has been published in Modern Painters
(September 2013: 100 Best Fall Shows), Studio Visit Magazine (2013 cover), Artillery Magazine (2010), the LA
Times (2010), and New American Paintings (2010 cover).
Justin Bower lives and works in Los Angeles.