An uncanny valley tears open when viewing Mark Jenkins’s sculptures of verisimilar human figures. His work triggers the discomfort and fear we instinctively feel upon encountering something that looks almost human, but not quite. Jenkins’s latest solo show, “Moment of Impact,” is currently on view at Lazarides Gallery in London through February 5.
With his hyperrealist sculptures, Jenkins transforms the ordinary gallery-going experience into what looks like a Hollywood-produced heist frozen in time. A foot kicks through a placid still life painting in one piece. The sculpture aggressively protrudes from the painting’s surface, creating a scene that resembles the instant before a ninja bursts through the wall. In other works, figures in dark hoods brandish sharp knives and flower bouquets. With so many recent stories of high-end art theft and vandalism in the news, these dummy-like sculptures activate our paranoia and invite us to imagine an epic thriller unfolding.
Check out our feature on Jenkins in Hi-Fructose Vol. 24 to learn more about the artist.