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“Origins” the debut Mexican solo exhibition

By Abigail Arriaga Mejía

Moyshen The Gallery is pleased to announce “Origins,” the debut Mexican solo exhibition of emerging artist Josh Rowell, following a two-month residency in San Miguel de Allende. Since graduating with a master’s degree in Fine Art from Kingston University, London UK, the artist has gone on to exhibit extensively in Europe and the US.

Through his practice, British artist Josh Rowell seeks to question the role that the digital world plays in reshaping our current notion of “reality.” The artist finds different ways to manifest these changes, continually exploring the space between the real and the virtual, fascinated by the way in which these two worlds interact. The artist looks at ways to break down, blur, and sometimes even reaffirm these boundaries.

For “Origins,” the artist has adopted his recognized “painting language” technique to deliver this highly anticipated solo exhibition. Through this painting series, the artist meticulously paints canvases with intricate color sequences. Entirely hand-painted, in varying patterns and forms, the artist has developed a complex coding system for language in order to create a new form of visual text with the potential to be read in both its original and altered state. In creating these works, the artist seeks to comment on developments within the digital and information age in which the foundations of the virtual world are made entirely of complex coding systems, systems that ultimately break down into a molecular binary decision, on and off, yes and no. It is from this concept that the artist attempts to create an aesthetic equivalent.

The exhibition centers around four main series of paintings, all of which explore the theme of human origin, using both religious origin stories and contemporary scientific texts.

The exhibition begins with two large-scale series, the first of which uses the opening chapters of the book of Genesis, the Judeo-Christian creation story. Contrasting with this is a second series that uses a transcript of Stephen Hawking’s renowned lecture “Life in the Universe” as its source information. These works bring into question the prevalent divide between religion and science, one of the most polarizing challenges of contemporary human society. The exhibition explores two further texts that have been inspired by the artist’s recent time in Mexico. The pre-Hispanic texts of Popol Vuh and Chilam Balam make up the remainder of the exhibition and highlight the rich diversity of the many different indigenous cultures of Mexico, while offering alternative perspectives on human creation.

Through this exhibition, Rowell seeks to explore the transient nature of information in the current climate. By turning these core texts into abstract works of contemporary painting, the artist seeks to unify them under a singular visual aesthetic, while also questioning the value and currency of information in the twenty-first century, in which all information becomes abstracted into coding systems. By choosing these texts, the artist seeks to show that, in a time of ever-increasing diversity and complexity, the constant and shifting nature of information, whether mythology, theology, or science, deals with the same fundamental questions about our own existence, and thus we are all united by a desire for the same answers.


Art Opening


Work by Josh Rowell

Sat, Sep 2, 5-7pm

Moyshen The Gallery

Fabrica La Aurora


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