Originally through painting and then through photography, Kellndorfer has been concerned with the physical and social construction of space in her body of work. The images in this exhibition represent classic modernist architectural landmarks in Los Angeles, yet rather than capturing the iconic wide-angle views famously photographed by Julius Shulman, Kellndorfer focuses on the intimate details of windows and reflections and how they reveal the ephemeral nature of seeing, as well as the subjectivity of space. 

Modernist architects have long been enamored with glass and its ambiguous qualities—solid yet invisible, present yet transparent. Kellndorfer’s interest in the ambiguity of space within homes designed by Oscar Niemeyer and Rudolf Schindler, for example, is evident in her studies of architectural elements such as glass windows, blinds and screens, whether man-made or shelters of bamboo, that provide privacy yet filter natural light to create a kind of enigmatic environment. This ambiguity of space is heightened by Kellndorfer’s use of highly reflective glass panels that are often life-sized, and when displayed in a gallery or museum, invites the viewer to experience his or her own subjective surroundings.

“Kellndorfer photographs emphasize the values of the International Style—simplicity, economy, order—but complicate them with layers of local vision, both hers and ours. The results are haunting elegiac images that pay tribute to the ideals of high modernism, yet also cast them adrift in the shifting context of the here and now.” (Sharon Mizota, ArtForum)


 

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Abstract Neighbors, Christopher Grimes Gallery, Santa Monica, 2012

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VERONIKA KELLNDORFER