September 11 - October 9, 2021
Karel Funk lives and works in Winnipeg, Canada. He received a BFA from the University of Manitoba in 1997 and an MFA from Columbia University in New York in 2003. Over the last decade he has investigated the possibilities of figurative portraits that find a bridge between historical signifiers, the dominant being renaissance portraiture, and contemporary urbanism. Using acrylic paint Funk builds his portraits through a glazing technique, often taking months to complete one painting. Funk has exhibited widely across North America and abroad, and in 2016 was the subject of a museum retrospective held at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. His work is in the collections of institutions such as the Guggenheim, Whitney Museum and the National Gallery of Canada, as well as many private collections.
Monte Clark Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of recent paintings by Karel Funk.
In a conscious inversion of portraiture’s traditional function, Funk’s hooded figures are all seen from behind enshrouded in the contours of their synthetic overgarments. Though we easily recognize a figure, we are left to gaze at the intricate creases of nylon, Gore-Tex, and other contemporary jacket fabrics that are rendered in meticulous detail. His subjects become channels for the amorphous colour fields, shadow and light interplay that is typical of Flemish painters of the 17th century and of Renaissance painting. With an almost trompe l’oeil flourish, the human origin of the subject disappears into its stark white backdrop, with an emerging dimensionality that is tactile and engulfing.
Visiting the gallery:
Walk-ins are welcome but the number of guests permitted in the gallery at one time will be limited. To avoid waiting, you may request an appointment during our open hours by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
We observe COVID 19 protocols, and request that you maintain physical distancing and wear a mask while visiting the gallery.
If you are feeling unwell or have traveled internationally in the last 14 days, we ask that you do not visit the gallery at this time.