Magazine article Artforum International

Geoff Lowe

Magazine article Artforum International

Geoff Lowe

Article excerpt

Geoff Lowe's visits to Vietnam, in 1991 and 1992, are reflected in three groups of work: straightforward drawings and gouaches of Hanoi, Halong Bay, and the Mekong River; the banners and posters he made to advertise his exhibition in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City; and, finally, complex paintings that hybridize the experience of Vietnam. In these, he memorializes two types of cultural milieu: those of an Edenic assembled world of friends and family; and the constructed world of nostalgia, which for Lowe exists as a series of memories of the '60s and '70s. Lowe's impressive paintings, A Constructed World I (Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band), 1992, and A Constructed World II (Bay Gio), 1992, are tableaux of a staged world of friends, artists and, in the latter picture, his Vietnamese hosts. Both paintings pastiche the Sergeant Pepper cover. In the first painting, instead of rock stars, Lowe's children pose in fancy pirates' costumes; in place of '60s photomontage, we see a collection of self-portraits by Lowe's associates. Other images, such as the hilly, wooded landscape and a walking, waving camera are quotations from his earlier paintings. …

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