ONE THING BEGETS ANOTHER | 2013
Despard Gallery, Hobart
16 Aug - 9 Sep 2013
This exhibition is a series of work concerned with camouflage - in the sense of how one thing relates to another, rather than how one thing hides from another. Specifically, they mark a continuation of my ongoing interest in media processes, knowledge systems and power structures. The works evolve through an engagement with materiality: the plexiglass substrate mediates the subject and the ground whilst continuously occupying the territory of object just as the application of spray paint oscillates between transparency and impenetrability across areas of the screen. Masks have been employed in the creation of the work to continuously reveal and conceal areas of the substrate, an additive and subtractive force at play. These masks, or stencils, are matrices, semi-random in their creation and deployment. The framework for these matrices is one thing begets another, each cut line informing where the next occurs, and each layer arranging and colouring the next. These matrices operate individually and collectively, often intersecting to create new arrays of arbitrary quantities. Enmeshed within the matrices are elements of form and colour which occasionally coalesce into figures or symbols. These areas have been treated with paint in much the same manner as has the rest of the matrix.
The video work, Entropic-Extropic, mimics the methodology employed in the painted works via a different set of processes. Fine particles of paint, dust and detritus have been manipulated to coalesce and fragment according to my level of interest and surveillance.
The Death of David Walsh is a painting that has been created using a wire brush attached to a power drill. The areas of image have been subtracted from layers of flat paint by vigorously applying the abrasive tool to the reverse surface of the plexiglass. Each successive layer of paint concealed the previous layer in such a way that the forming image was continuously hidden from view - resulting in a painting that was painted, or un-painted, before it was seen in the manner that you are seeing it.
SHIELDS AGAINST THE ENEMY | 2011
CRITERION GALLERY, Hobart
12 May - 11 June 2011
Information pours upon us, instantaneously and continuously. As soon as information is acquired, it is very rapidly replaced by still newer information. Our electrically-configured world has forced us to move from the habit of data classification to the mode of pattern recognition. We can no longer build serially, block-by-block, step-by-step, because instant communication insures that all factors of the environment and of experience co-exist in a state of active interplay. 1
We live in a relationship with the world that is mediated by competitive forces. It is a marriage of lust and violence, woven into a mythic narrative about ourselves in which we figure as hero, saviour and inheritor of a blessed heritage. We are possessed of a most potent salve of self-forgiveness and a scathing tongue of recrimination. We are the adepti at the Church of Lesser Evils.
I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. 2
Throughout history we have sublimated our transgressions against the other. In turn, we have accreted in vast storehouses the memory of transgressions committed against us. We hold the potential energy of these forces in check with the feathery weight of our self-restraint.
All gods are homemade, and it is we who pull their strings, and so, give them the power to pull ours. 3
We promote that which we despise and cast down that which we hold dear.
Soon I discovered that this rock thing was true… Jerry Lee Lewis was the devil and Jesus was an architect previous to his career as a prophet. 4
We are the chosen elite, the custodians and overlords of planet Earth. We are the self appointed arbiters of morality and profanity, and we enforce our dictates through elaborate and pervasive systems of technology. We are the architects of poverty, the engineers of exclusion. Billions stand behind us.
We are the enemy, and we are on drugs. 5
1. Marshall McLuhan, The Medium is the Massage (1967, p. 63).
2. Abraham Lincoln in a letter to (Col.) William F. Elkins, Nov. 21, 1864.
3. Aldous Huxley
4. Jesus Built My Hotrod, Ministry, 1991
5. Enemy, Scars on Broadway, 2008