Perrotin is pleased to present Trinket Eater, an exhibition of new work from Houston-born, New York-based artist Trevon Latin. Trinket Eater marks Latin’s first exhibition both in New York and with the gallery. Traversing many approaches — painting, costuming, performance, and installation — Latin introduces a new series of his fabric-based mixed media sculptures and paintings on the gallery’s second floor.
Latin collects textiles and objects that he then stitches together in his time-intensive sewing, painting, and assemblage practice. For Trinket Eater, Latin conjures a fantasy landscape that is inhabited by luminous beings. Latin’s world is endlessly green and undulating, echoing the open fields scattered around Southeast Texas. Here, Latin’s creatures are granted space and safety, guarded by the reflective gaze of sequins. Latin constructs worlds through stitching and creates an unbroken surface by bonding together many discarded ones.
If Trinket Eater is a space, then it is Shaturqua Relentless (they/them) who occupies Trinket Eater. Born over a decade ago, S. Relentless is ancestor, benevolent companion, muse and mirror for Latin. Sometimes Latin performs as S. Relentless — most often in elaborate, historically sensitive costuming and facing a camera lens — and sometimes, vice versa. Before us, the artist has developed avatars of S. Relentless based on virtual reality, queer nightlife, mythology and the artist’s own visage as a transformative palette. Here, they appear in many forms. Built bit by bit, each manifestation of S. Relentless is physically extravagant and overtly femme. Latin stitches sequin dresses onto swathes of animal print fabric and worn jeans, which are bejeweled with talismanic items from Latin’s everyday life, including door knocker earrings, synthetic hair, and flower clips. They are, quite literally, Trinket Eaters.
Upon entering the exhibition, visitors are greeted by a series of buoyant sculptures, unfurled across the central room of the exhibition. Immaterial (RIP Sophie) is composed of accumulated fabric, wire, and found objects. Their appendages stretch widely — one arm is cloaked in the armor of a football player, while the other is costumed in a flamboyant Medieval sleeve — and a golden mask sits atop their head, looking upwards. Underneath them, Latin has constructed a pedestal from salvaged building materials.
Inside, Untitled (in blue) depicts two figures, caught in an embrace. Their bodies are sheathed in sequins, traditional strokes of oil paint, and taut fabric. Trained as a studio painter, Latin’s early practice meditated heavily on portraiture. In Untitled (in blue), evidence of Latin’s relationship to traditional figurative painting abounds. His fabric-based works contain the grammar of a traditional painting — a focused color palette, punctuated by precise brushstroke — yet the relationship is nonlinear. Most often, textiles seem to swallow Latin’s canvasses, forcing them into submission. In this painting, the mouths of the figures are obscured. Instead, the lower halves of their faces are veiled by a cascading stream of blue plastic barrettes. One figure leans in for a kiss, while the other partner’s gaze darts towards us. From this point onwards, we are invited in.
Born in 1987 in Houston, Texas, USA
Lives and works in New York, USA
Born in Houston in 1987, Trevon Latin is a multimedia artist whose work seeks to engender narrative and world-making through the media of painting, sculpture, installation, and performance. In his application of textures, such as sequined cloth, found textiles, and canvas, the artist creates compositions that develop avatars and personas from virtual reality, queer nightlife, mythology and the artist's own visage as a transformative palette. The resulting creations blend futurity and fantasy, mythology and religion, creating landscapes where the characters portrayed exist in a state of becoming.
Latin received his BFA from the University of Houston, Texas in 2011, before receiving an MFA from Yale University's department of Painting and Printmaking in 2020. The artist lives and works in New York, NY.
—More about the artist