Current

SMART OBJECTS is pleased to present Den, a solo exhibition of new works by Los Angeles-based painter Derek Paul Jack Boyle.

9.13 – 10.19

Den engages the concept of mise-en-scène: from the French “placing on stage," this term is commonly used to describe a visual theme. The gallery has become a setting for these works, where each piece acts out a metaphor of a private albeit strange retreat. Boyle paints objects within these scenes, evoking subjective allegories. Narratives arise from elements of fantasy, where imagination supplants observation.

This exhibition reimagines everyday objects as larger than themselves, also extending to the darkly carpeted floor with irregular mounds that offer a directed experience within the scene of the gallery. André Bazin, a French film critic, describes the mise-en-scène as emphasizing choreographed movement within the scene rather than through editing. Here, the commonplace setting is subverted, creating a metaphorical stage defined by its visual components and "acted out" by objects that frequently surround us.

The paintings of Den have become elements of an overarching narrative, where each work accounts for a part of the mise-en-scène. As a setting, a den is a retreat - a private area to pursue personal (sometimes illicit) activities, and each painting directly refers to this idea - relating back to the intrigue of a den's seclusion and the value of privacy. It's as if this mise-en-scène is defined by someone moving throughout the spaces of the paintings, affecting their environments only to retreat back out of frame before altering the space of the gallery itself. What is seen is the effect of a secret individual, a set designer casting objects as metaphors of actions that calls the viewer to participate as a character in the mise-en-scène offering a retreat into a stage of the absurd.

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Derek Paul Jack Boyle (b. 1985, Cambridge MA) received his MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, RI and his BA from Emerson College in Boston, MA. Boyle's work has been featured in the New York Times, It’s Nice That, VICE Creators Project, Elephant Magazine, and WYNC/NPR's Radiolab. Recent exhibitions include: Replica, Insect Gallery, Los Angeles; All the Small Things, Steve Turner, Los Angeles; Unease (solo), SMART OBJECTS, Los Angeles; Can’t Fix Broken (duo w/ Mitra Saboury), Alter Space, San Francisco; You Catch More Flies with Arsenic Than Honey, Club Pro, Los Angeles; Thin Places, SMART OBJECTS, Landers, CA; Los Angeles; Wwwest, Johannes Vogt Gallery, New York; Plainly to Propound, Gavlak Gallery, Los Angeles; and recent fairs including NADA Miami and Felix LA. Boyle is represented by SMART OBJECTS in Los Angeles.