MATTHEW JENSEN — There from Here: A Collection of Brooklyn Walks
June 13 - July 21, 2018 — Open Source Gallery (Brooklyn, NY)
Open Source Gallery presented There from Here: A Collection of Brooklyn Walks, a solo exhibition by Matthew Jensen curated by Ian Cofré.
Matthew Jensen, who lived for years in South Slope, Brooklyn, has created numerous works that explore landscapes across the borough, including Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Prospect Park, Barren Island, and—most recently—Green-Wood Cemetery. A photographer by training, Jensen is a contemporary landscape artist who often combines image-making with installation and participatory action to investigate the ways through which people experience and interact with both physical and virtual landscapes. Each of his projects involves walking, extended observation, and site-specific exploration, particularly of public spaces, which results in an approach akin to an urban archaeology. With this cultural practice, the artist generates photographs, videos, maps, sculptural installations, and collections of materials and debris that upon closer inspection define and abstract notions of everyday space.
There from Here is both a survey of Jensen’s past Brooklyn-based works and a compendium of the walking maps, which—in the open source spirit—are available for audience members to take away. The maps are photographic objects as well as detailed guides to the artist’s walking practice, revealing forgotten histories, invisible remnants, and encounters with the surrounding natural world, which can be undertaken by anyone, individually or collectively. It’s this inversion of the hierarchies of seeing, where the artist privileges the act of looking down, closely, without an intervening screen, that feels like a vital political gesture today.