Neon

 

Planthouse
Neon, 2017
Six-color silkscreen
12.25 x 10.5 inches
Edition of 26
Printed by Brad Ewing and Marco Lawrence
$250

 

In anticipation of its four-year anniversary Planthouse announces a new edition that alludes to the evolving Flower District neighborhood in New York, urban signage, and the passage of time more generally.  The six-color silkscreen print depicts the gallery’s cactus and sun logo as a degrading polaroid photo of a neon sign.  Critiquing the way we generate and view images through the frames of social media, and paying homage to film technology, the print complexly recreates a nearly defunct image format in an enlarged scale.

The cactus logo itself is an encapsulation of the changing identity of the Flower District.  It appeared on the business card for the flower store that previously occupied the initial gallery space at 107 West 28th street.  Katie and Brad discovered the card on the floor when moving in – a left-behind relic – and decided to use the logo and name Planthouse as a tribute to the former life of the space.  Not immune to the rapid changes of the neighborhood, the gallery was later forced to move further east as the building was sold to make way for a new hotel.  In the current space the logo was transformed into a neon sign as a recollection of an earlier New York landscape and an acknowledgment of the dwindling wholesale businesses for flowers, garments and accessories in the surrounding area.  The print is also symbolic of the life of the gallery.  Planthouse has charted its internal history through polaroids taken at each opening and the images have now begun to degrade, erasing the past.  The discoloring photos could mark the vulnerability of printed media, or, like the flowers in a Dutch still life, serve as a momento mori – a warning about the fleeting nature of time.