16 July – 6 September 2009

Carlota Perla
Mattia Biagi

Sweet Dreams Are Made of These features two artists whose striking works subvert figures and objects in order to explore new meanings and associations outside of their generally accepted contexts– Mattia Biagi using tar to do this and Carlota Perla taking Velazquez’s Infanta Margarita and placing her in a surrealist dreamworld.

Inspired by Los Angeles’s La Brea Tar Pits, Biagi was entranced by the texture of the substance and intrigued by the dichotomy he had discovered: a natural, primordial element existing within a modern, urban environment. Interested in the “second skin” that the material imparts on whatever it comes into contact with, the artist!s first project involving tar was focused on children’s teddy bears. The combination of such a powerful medium used to encase the ultimate symbol of childhood innocence resulted in a loaded and charged image, which would come to serve as the artist!s hallmark. Born in Italy and living and working in LA, this is Mattia’s first show in the UK after gaining much critical acclaim in the States recently in such publications as Art in America and Paper Magazine.

Meanwhile, Perla’s Margarita is displaced from her classical canvas and dances around in an enclosed oval frame while blowing soap bubbles full of rose scented bird twitter. The oval form of the drawings refer to the traditionally feminine miniature paintings, here having taken on gigantic proportions. Iconography from art history, conceptions of women their life and role in art, and general ideas of life and death all play out in these dreamscapes, capturing the girl in the drawings inside history and inside her head Perla lives and works in Barcelona and has exhibited her work throughout Europe.