Norwegian artist Bjarne Melgaard has never been much for subtlety. His paintings, drawings, films, and sculptures are schizophrenic mixes of raunch and color, where violence and heavy brushstrokes, pornography and scrawling text coexist in entropic harmony.
Lately, Melgaard has been writing novels, though certainly not in the traditional sense. At the intersection of reality and fantasy, the artist’s narratives weave around logic and chronicle, mimicking the feeling of his fine art pieces. This month, in the aptly titled exhibition “A New Novel” at Luxembourg and Dayan, Melgaard is collaborating with a team of artists and designers, namely, the New York fashion label Proenza Schouler. The brand’s designers, Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough, have worked with Melgaard to create clothing to outfit dolls placed around the gallery’s Upper East Side townhouse. The dolls are positioned to create a tableau of enacted violence reminiscent of that portrayed in Melgaard’s novel. 150 digitally woven and sequined garments, inspired by the artist’s latest paintings, will be on view in the behemoth exhibition.
The dolls will be on view with wallpaper and carpeting also designed by Melgaard, in addition to 13 new paintings and the debut of the artist’s latest novel. “A New Novel” promises a uniquely immersive and supremely chaotic experience.