mixed media, oil and graphite on paper, triptych 110 x 225 cm executed in 2009 Provenance: Private collection, South of France In this triptych entitled Space Union, Massholder creates a unique world where human forms meet alien figures, and the ordinary blends with the extraordinary and otherworldly. Figures, especially if seen as individual panels, almost begin to take on the form of landscapes in this weird pictorial space. It’s a work that explores otherness as a way to reconsider the familiar, a vast alien space that contains an outline of the human. In Space Union the lines between the strange and the quotidian are shown to be much more porous than we might think. Executed with fine, well-defined graphite lines, and meticulously drawn of flesh and surfaces, this work unveils a tactile and visual contrast of materials, which the artist employs to emphasize the figures in contrast with the vast green background of this large-scale triptych. ERIC MASSHOLDER (b. 1960) Working with and between different artistic traditions is a hallmark of Eric Massholder’s work, as he’s an artist who is deeply interested in the unexpected connections that surround us. Now based in the south of France, in his youth the Franco-German artist wanted to understand more about art across different cultures. This compelled him to travel to and study in numerous countries including Morocco, Greece and India. Working in various mediums, Massholder is always exploring new potential networks, drawing on a wealth of inspiration from famous artists and artistic movements such as Picasso, Dalí and surrealism to Greek mythology and contemporary culture. Born in 1960, Massholder is something of an artistic explorer whose series span a plethora of styles, often uncovering surprising new relationships between different artistic ideas. Be they lasting or fleeting, these connections create an artistic world that is consistently examining the porousness of boundaries of all kinds, and the interplay between the conscious and subconscious. This can be clearly seen not only in Massholder’s paintings from the late 2000s, such as Space Union and When Fire Makes Water, but also in much of his earlier work, for instance with Kaleo from 1995.