Summer in Gstaad (Gstaad)

Summer in Gstaad (Gstaad)

Saturday, December 28, 2013Sunday, February 9, 2014

Patricia Low Contemporary
Gstaad, Switzerland

Dan Colen, George Condo, Tracey Emin, Mark Flood, Wade Guyton, Rachel Harrison, Mary Heilmann, Damien Hirst, Anselm Kiefer, Nate Lowman, Eddie Peake, Richard Prince, Sterling Ruby, Josh Smith, Oscar Tuazon, Andy Warhol, Bruce High Quality Foundation

A group exhibition inspired by the Film Score Composed and Conducted by Henry Mancini.

Henry Mancini composed the song ‘Summer in Gstaad’ for the 1975 film The Return of the Pink Panther, the fourth in the series. Why not celebrate the height of the winter season along the same lines as you might enjoy a straw-hatted stroll on a hot sunny day?

The Panther movies depicted a heightened sense of the absurd coupled with demonic, at times moronic, slapstick humor in the name of lighthearted enjoyment. Though art is typically associated with concepts beyond those of the clambake, let’s embrace the notion of summer holidays – serendipity, nostalgia, joy – and combine it with the love of all things creative.

Such an open-ended group exhibition presents an opportunity for accidental encounters and seemingly random juxtapositions of disparate works covering a span of nearly 40 years. The wide-ranging pieces don’t adhere to any preconceived parameters, save for providing the occasion to reveal and revel in representations with transcendent and medicinal values beyond calculation (sometimes for no other reason than that I like these things).

Despite widespread sentiment that we live in a hyper-inflated world of passion investments driven by art, cars, gems and property, a long way from the seemingly simpler, carefree days of former Gstaad resident Peter Sellers and the Pink Panther movies, I couldn’t think of safer and sounder place to park. Yes, the world was smaller, perhaps a little more fun and funny then, but art is the perfect synthesis of learning and entertainment. Besides, galleries offer the last free lunch in town.

Henry Mancini’s ‘Summer in Gstaad’ is a tune characterized by a prevailing feeling of innocence, and though the works in this show are not entirely merry – in fact some downright dark and melancholy– they are still delightful to dwell amongst. When surrounded by art, just about every day is like Christmas and the summer holidays combined. And, in a worst-case scenario, here is the ideal chance for those who don’t like to ski as much as me to pursue something halfway productive.