ODD JOB. TED CAREY, JACOB GOUDREAULT, AND SIMON SLATER.
EXHIBITION DATES: SEPTEMBER 7 - 30, 2012
Fowler Arts Collective is pleased to present Odd Job, an exhibition of new work by artists Ted Carey, Jacob Goudreault, and Simon Slater. Painting in the 21st century is an odd job. With no rules or boundaries, how does one beat a path to new possibilities? Each exhibiting artist addresses this question in their own way, but shares an underlying strategy of poking around in little-noticed or neglected corners of painting culture.
Manipulating painting language with materials only occasionally including paint, Ted Carey melds painting and sculptural traditions to exploit and question our cognitive tic of finding representation in abstraction. Looking at clouds, we see elephants and rearing horses, and Carey’s arte povera-inflected assemblage makes the minimum gestures needed to slip into images of heads, hands, and animals. Crude faces appear in blocks of wood or salvaged landscape and still life paintings, enacting an Arcimboldo procedure that expands without limit. These proliferating human and animal forms reflect Carey’s concerns with identity, thought, and agency, and the increasingly problematic impact of our actions on the natural world.
Jacob Goudreault’s work addresses the painting support and its construction, redirecting our attention backward to focus on the process that precedes what we traditionally conceive as creative activity. The supports in his works are not necessarily traditional materials such as primed canvas or wood, but include ingredients such as hockey tape in place of gesso. His paintings are the result of minute attention to the mark making that occurs as a by-product of building his supports: noticing these marks, Goudreault builds on them until they have been expanded and exaggerated into painterly topographies.
Uber-Modernist critic Clement Greenberg believed each artistic medium was evolving toward an ultimate purity, and in Simon Slater’s work this vision achieves its absurdist apotheosis. Slater eliminates the use of any support, inventing methods to make paintings composed purely of paint. In his new work, Slater takes a ride on the coattails of geometric abstraction, but like a tail wagging the dog he defies the tight structures typical of the genre in favor of a loopier experience. But underneath his wobbly lines, strange textures, and drunken shapes lies a rigorous concern with formalist history and a search for new opportunities.
~ Exhibition essay by Daniel Gerwin, an editor of Title, an online magazine covering visual art in Philadelphia.
Please join Fowler for the opening reception of Odd Job on Friday, Sept. 7th from 7-10pm. The exhibition can be viewed on Saturdays and Sundays from 1-6pm and by appointment.
Fowler is located in the historic Greenpoint Terminal building on the East River waterfront in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. The closest subway is the Greenpoint Ave. G train stop. Our address is: 67 West Street, Unit 216, Brooklyn, NY 11222.
This exhibition is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by the Brooklyn Arts Council, Inc. (BAC).