Michael Berryhill at Kate Werble Gallery / New York


Kate Werble Gallery
83 Vandam Str
New York, NY 10013

In his new body of paintings for the exhibition, a window, adore, Michael Berryhill partakes in a type of painterly pareidolia, the visual and psychological experience of seeing faces in otherwise unfamiliar patterns, finding meaning in its absence. 
The forms Berryhill unearths are symbols used throughout the history of Western painting - flowers, open books, heroic figures, animals and architectural elements. The commonplace nature of these symbols, however, belies their pliancy of meaning, a characteristic Berryhill underlines by rendering them blurred and indistinct, simultaneously overworked and imprecise. It becomes as difficult to attach a specific meaning to these symbols as it is to fully identify the objects depicted. 
In past exhibitions, Berryhill worked with subject material that would develop in opposition to one another, each painting with its counterpoint. With this new group of works, he embarks on a search for significance, knowing all the while that meaning rarely stands still for long. 
Berryhill ruminates on the human desire for significance, mining the symbols of art history and our collective unconscious in such a way that the significant object is at once overflowing and empty, ready to be filled again. 
a window, adore marks Berryhill’s first exhibition with the gallery. 

Michael Berryhill was born in El Paso, Texas in 1972. He received his BFA at the University of Texas in 1994 (Austin, TX) and his MFA from Columbia University in 2009 (New York, NY). He has held solo exhibitions at Galeria Marta Cervera, Madrid, ES (2017); Night Gallery, Los Angeles, CA (2016); KANSAS, New York, NY (2016, 2014, 2012); Jeff Bailey Gallery, Hudson, NY (2015); CTRL, Houston, TX (2010); and Horton Gallery, New York, NY (2009). He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. 

* All images: Courtesy of the artist and Kate Werble Gallery, New York, NY 
Photography credit: Elisabeth Bernstein