ROTATE / REPEAT / SCALE / MOVE / SUBTRACT
is a series of abstract works on plywood I’ve created over the last four years; in it, I try to deliver the purest aesthetic experience with the simplest, and most economical means possible. Fine artists like Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, and Ellsworth Kelly (as well as my personal background in computer graphic Design) have all inspired these works’ formal aspects; but equally important is the fact that their physical aspects are born entirely of low-fi, accessible materials that can be purchased at any Home Depot. I restrict myself: to thin-but-sturdy sheets of plywood (cut, in a narrow, cinematic sweep of 84″ x 24″); to a palette of six colors (carefully chosen) of average acrylic Latex house paint; and to tightly rendered graphic compositions which obliterate a typical reading of ‘background’ and ‘foreground.’ Through such restrictions, I’ve found great freedom –ways to yield new visual data within the paradigm of abstraction; ways to convey a liberating sense movement within a narrow picture plane; and also, to shatter ideas of high-art preciousness so long driven by (abstraction, and other conceptual paradigms) embraced by the art-market.
I work with a lexicon of forms that is both vast and very personal: a pair of 3-D glasses I purchased in Germany informed the image in “3D View” (2007); the red circle of the Japanese flag is honed in on and referenced in “Japan” (2007); a city-street grid, seen upended and in close-up, makes its way into “Escaping Sao Paulo” (2007). The end-user of these works may, if they wish, hang them vertically, rotate them, etc. (hence, the series’ title). Just as all the inspiration for my works come from my lived experience of objects in plain view (everything from a photographic archive I’ve made of New York City architectural details, to package design) so, too, do I offer up these works to the viewer’s best application. They can hang them as they wish and make my fine art work a part of their daily, visual lexicon. Hopefully, they will ultimately free themselves up–even as a non-traditional, “art” audience–to enjoy color, motion, and shape.