com’on chris! have a little faith. there can be pretty much a sense of anything…
sense of ripple: my brother and i used to dive underwater and try and talk through it and then figure out what eachother were saying. that sounds about right to me.
at some point this winter, i rented a bunch of documentary style movies from the library which were basically all about: ‘what are the small, arcane things in our lives that we never take notice of and how are they made?’
one featured how those long, rubber hand grips on escalators are made.
i know that this might reveal a bit too much about how i spend my spare time. and i will understand if no one wants to talk to me anymore, but, actually, if you could take that movie and those handgrips and somehow combine them with the google-earth map program, what springs to (my) mind (at least) is something not all that dissimilar to Deborah’s pieces.
Does anyone else ever feel, what’s the word, compromised (?) about using oil paint? Personally, I am drawn into other media a lot, and I understand a lot of painters might not feel that way.
When I think about it, what oil paint is, on the one hand, it practically HAS to be oil paint (for range, nuance, vibrance, even historical continuity, etc), but on the other, I think, well, isn’t there some way I could make something as (or more) compelling using materials that are more a part of everything else in my day-to-day life?
Does that happen to anyone else?
I guess I should add that Fayetteville is a pretty green-minded town, and I am a pretty cheap frugal guy.
i really think it’s cool when people use materials that i never would have considered using. Deborah’s work has some sort of immediate appeal, as did Marcie Miller Gross’s work earlier this month. but, honestly, when it comes to the tactile draw of the materials, these things don’t make me want to get my hands into them – even though on many levels they are more tactile, immediate, and often direct than oil paint.
i was talking about this to someone the other day:
i just really enjoy almost everything about the oil paint. i like the way it looks, i like the smell of it, i like the consistency. i like the fact that it still surprises me and that i learn unexpected things from it.
but, saying that, what i really admire about this other work is that it deftly transmutes one type of experience into another type of experience. these rubbery/wiry sculptures are tectonic, they are maps, they are a voice underwater. they are a million things rushing at me and they make me notice lots of different stuff. which, when it comes to oil paint, maybe it’s in part due to the fact that i know more about paint and paintings than i do about rubber and wire, but, often my expectations for the read of oil paintings in general seem a little more pre-determined. as though: i come to the painting already assuming some of what it is going to tell me.
but, this is the other thing: oil painting is sort of a mini, toxic/environmental disaster, and i often feel really guilty about contributing to that.
Yeah, I suppose as daily, lived contradictions go, using oil paint and also caring about the environment might fall on the tamer side. Considering how big your average oil spill is.
I guess what it comes down to is agenda: what the work needs. If you want ‘actual,’ you use real materials. If you want to conjure up some or all of the eternal discourses inherent to Oil Paint, then you use oil paint.
I put some serious time into being vegetarian, for example– I know that meat is meat, fake meat is fake meat, and there’s no point in trying to get one to pass for the other. You just choose what fits your wants.
Also, I might personally be more tied up in the contradiction of using expensive materials to make art (for what they are), and then also being compelled by art-making that doesn’t require expensive materials (for what it means). There’s a border line that’s in constant flux…