Sharon Louden and Fernando Casasempere at the Hempel Hotel

Curated by Studio Caparrelli
The Hempel

In February 2003 the 'Zen' interior of London's ultra cool Hempel Hotel will be filled with works of art by two leading international contemporary artists: Sharon Louden and Fernando Casasempere. Although completely different in style, the work of these artists is connected by its allusions to movements of the body and a tension between the solid 3-D nature of art and its ethereal qualities.

The drawings of American artist, Sharon Louden are compelling. Large surfaces appear 'empty' except for a cluster of frenetic marks in a corner which seems almost suspended in space. On closer inspection the marks come to life, bringing to mind organisms or molecular structures seen through a microscope.

"My drawings are representations of what I consider 'anthropomorphic' individuals. Although abstract and formal, they have human-like aspects within their very minimal state, made of simple line and gesture. Through the specific, awkward placement of these forms, they evoke movement through their gesture and have a dialogue with the space in a way that questions their history: are these forms moving in or out of the space and is the environment pushing them out or allowing them in? It is important for me to create the illusion of a three-dimensional form that, through its subtlety and beauty, elicits a powerful presence in its own world."
Sharon M. Louden

Strangely alive and visually startling, Louden's work has a high profile in the US and has been shown in venues across Europe including: the Kunstmuseum Winterhur, Switzerland; AkademieK; Akademie der Kunste, Berlin; Fonds regional d'art contemporain de Picardie and Museee de Picardie, Amiens France; and Arc Gallery, Vienna, Austria. She lives and works in New York City.

Alongside a series of fourteen works on paper by Louden, Studio Caparrelli is installing nine new pieces by renowned Chilean sculptor Fernando Casasempere. As with Louden's work, the viewer is made highly aware of the time and energy the artist has spent making the art and the physical actions employed in the process.

Casasempere draws his inspiration from Nature creating seductive abstract volumes in clay. He translates, in a sensual way, the relationship between void and mass. Some of his earlier works were made by literally embracing and pressing clay onto his body, between his arms and chest, to reveal the 'negative spaces' of the human body.

There is a tension between the static solidity of his chosen material and the dynamic movement of the curves and lines of the finished work. His sculptures reveal a powerful link between the past and present: the subtle colours and the irregular texture (almost like bronze) bring to mind Pre-Columbian art giving his work an ancient quality, yet the shapes and lines remind us of modern sculpture, such as Arp, Miro' and Brancusi.

"Casasempere has managed to extract a new voice from his material, and this voice speaks to us of the essential secrets and mysteries of life and of man. What more can we ask for from a pair of hands which shape voids into volumes of clay?"
Edward Shaw

Casasempere was born in 1958 and has had major shows in Chile and North America, Japan and London. He has been based in London for the past four years where he works in a converted warehouse in the East End.

Studio Caparrelli is run by Italian art historian and curator Alda Caparrelli. The Studio brings to London works by first rate international contemporary artists and presents exhibitions in domestic and commercial settings outside the gallery environment.

Dates: 4 February - 2 March 2003
Venue: The Hempel Hotel, 31-35 Craven Hill Gardens, London W2 3EA
Tel: 07968 059 103
Open: 10am-10pm daily
Nearest tube: Lancaster Gate/Paddington

For further information on both artists please contact Alda Caparrelli on 07968 059 103 or alda@studiocaparrelli.com

4 February - 2 March 2003