From Marilyn to the Beatles, Dennis Scholl’s art remaps collective memory and obsession
On January 27, Dennis Scholl will unveil The Texture of My Memory, an exhibition of new artworks coming to Europe and premiering at Hua International in Berlin. The pieces are assemblages of rare cultural ephemera he has trawled from auction sites. From the original tabloids of Marilyn Monroe’s death to royalty statements sent to Paul McCartney and John Lennon, the materials composing these works are archival in their own regard. Together, they explore the symbiotic nature of creating and collecting.
Though this marks the public debut of his visual art practice, Scholl is no stranger to the art world. As an Emmy-award-winning filmmaker, he’s created documentaries on artists like Clyfford Still. As a philanthropist and arts administrator, his work as VP of Arts of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and now as the President/CEO of Miami’s Oolite Arts has provided opportunities for generations of artists. He’s also spent the past 40 years collecting things: the art of others, and the materials to create his own.
The works pivot between individual and societal obsession (Beatlesmania, the tragedy of Marilyn Monroe), while exploring ideas of authorship, and value. And while the objects play with collective memory as a theme, they explore an innate impulse to arrange the world along aesthetic or conceptual lines.