Curated by Scott Goodman
Nov 8 – 23
Opening reception: Saturday, November 8 from 6-9pm
1100 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11221
Featuring: Graham Anderson, Jerry Blackman, Andrew Graham, Caitlin Keogh, Carly Mark, Matthew Palladino, Ben Sanders, and Eric Shaw
Good Work Gallery is pleased to present rendering, an exhibition of paintings displaying graphic characteristics of clipart, logos, textile patterns and other visuals of a commercial nature. This group of artists, who are digital natives, re-approach mainstream sensibilities on their own terms, and in doing so, create paintings which draw on and refresh histories of Pop imagery. The impersonal, immediate, and immaterial qualities of the digital image are contrasted and underlined by the intrinsically human, physical act of painting by hand, using a brush.
Replicating a mechanical line with paint requires restriction of the body to only the most essential movements to carrying out the task. The pulsation of blood through one’s veins and capillaries, or the expansion and contraction of the lungs is enough to disturb the trajectory of a line being drawn between two points. The comparison of man to machine-made production brings attention to the shifting role of the artist in relation to evolving image-making technologies. By implementing painting to produce the effects of machinery, as is the case with the works in this show, the artist mimics the machine, suspending aspects of their own humanity while also accentuating it in the act.
Matthew Palladino’s The Draftsman’s Malaise depicts a space entirely composed of clip art, in which a canvas sits perched on an easel articulated in bold black lines of eerily uniform weight. The pictured canvas features three red cups containing the same arrangement of drafting tools: two pencils, a pair of exacto knives, a ruler, and a paintbrush; all utensils that imply the artists’ hand.
Graham Anderson depicts malleable, planar worlds, mechanically bending comic elements within them around each other. Untitled, depicts a folded cat in an autoerotic sexual act. Whether the image is a highly stylized depiction of a real cat or a realistic depiction of a stylized cat is ambiguous.
Ben Sanders and Eric Shaw incorporate flat sharply delineated brush-stroke-like shapes that simultaneously direct our attention to the gestural application of paint by hand and to the computerized simulation of a paintbrush tool made available through graphic editing programs like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
Carly Mark’s floral design in Event Horizon calls to mind the copy/paste and fill commands used for transferring, extending and flooding data from multiple sources.
Andrew Graham mimics the graphic and formal qualities of the CAPTCHA, an acronym for “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart,” which tests the presence of a human onlooker by their ability to recognize, separate, and contextualize distorted numerical and alphabetical combinations.
Jerry Blackman’s untitled series of hybridized cartoons also tests human recognition by splicing together attributes of popular cartoon characters we know from screen and print. The sensation of being reintroduced to ones own family in the horrific aftermath of a facial transplant surgery is evoked. Winnie the Pooh’s ears protrude from Garfield’s head while Bamm-Bamm’s skeleton has somehow slipped under a Bart Simpsons skin suit.
The articulation of Caitlin Keogh’s Argyle patterning in Successful Multiple Retailers draws from textile design. It softly, subtly undulates in a decidedly human manner that glories in fallibility as much as in control and precision.
Opening hours: Saturday & Sunday, 12 – 6pm, and by appointment
And now for a special treat…