Bad Art : The Film

Artist Statement:

“If a tree falls in the woods, does it make a sound?” 

In our film, we observe the unobservable: the journey in a mind moments before an artist makes a painting- the instant of volition, inspiration, isolation and reflection- all pouring into a “reality” that becomes a work of art.

However, in BAD ART, we break the vacuum of the artist studio, and interface it with the demands of the world when five people arrive in search of validation and meaning. The door of the studio becomes a superposition: the observation of the visitors, forcing an outcome of definition. 

There has been an article printed describing a paradigm-shifting work of art, and the visitors want it. If they define the piece of art by their own standards, it will change them and complete them, a hope as mercurial and elusive as The Holy Grail. Yet, much like Scripture, they’re having a hard time getting a literal definition out of allegory. The search for meaning from a Rorschach test- each perception as valid a projection as the rest- but just as useless in their ultimate goal of consumption. If they can’t identify it, they can’t have it, and words seem both to be allies and adversaries on their own journey of definition. So, “Bad Art” follows their projections and subjective judgments about “good” and “bad” - staked against one another, as they debate which work must hold the ultimate truth.

  Our visitors are defined by their own definitions, and ultimately their perception of what bad art is. But what is “bad?” The age old question being, how we define something- an object, as empirically bad or good. Is it its context, it’s relevance, it’s ability to reflect a culture or inspire it? Is it its resonance with our body, or it’s alignment with our values or with the entropy of the universe— or simply it’s ability to mirror the viewer’s perception of themselves, confirming doubts, allowing them to feel like their decisions are correct, their path one of purpose. Is it the obligation of a work of art to answer these questions or ignore them?

Without perimeters, and boundaries, you can continuously pull back the lens of definition, change the framework, and what is bad becomes good for one reason, and what is good becomes bad. Why has human kind offered, with all the effort of linguistics for millennia, these two, commonly used binary definitions of the subjective. And now, in a culture that re-appropriates its own language, redefines itself continuously, where do these boundaries sit? And what is truly bad? 

Perhaps one could argue that the moral obligation of art, based on the framework of human history, is to point the way towards a world we could live in, a potential reality. To shed a light upon overlooked, unrepresented and marginalized voices, to use art as a memory device that lets history not repeat itself. Yet how does one make work, aligned with this progress while under the restrictions it requires to be a creative voice in this day and age. Ultimately, it requires a subjective judgement from someone in a place of power. Someone with the authority to say this is “good” or “bad”- this is aligned with something “I” feel is of value to history. Because, the consensus shifts- what is good today, may be bad tomorrow.  So despite this preamble, BAD ART is a film that tackles the objective, from multiple sides of art simultaneously. We live in times where preconceived notions of gender and equality are being redefined— BAD ART mirrors this process of redefinition. It takes preconceived notions about authorship and identity from the old paradigm and brings them to light in the socially awakened framework we live in today. 

If the information age has given us one gift, it is that the subjective opinion of one no longer reigns as an objective factMaking truth debatable: a double edged sword. When revisiting truths held as standards in the 16th century we laugh, and again, in the 18th, 19th— history over and over correcting itself, the voices of many, defining realities thought to be subjective interpretations of truth in years past. The “salon de refuse” becoming the most important artists of the 20th century,  Quantum physics disrupting the rules of Newton’s physics. Science changes, as does art, so why don’t our definitions of bad and good? BAD ART is a reflection and redefinition of the past. It is an amendment to the overlooked. It aims to take the oppressive theories, the stranglehold on critical discourse, and explore it at a molecular level. Starting with a simple question: “ If you never can take authorship over your creations, are they still worth creating?” 

Our film looks at how a “post-truth” era could occur, and debates the veracity of past scions of objectivity. But rather than being revisionist, it looks forward, addressing the challenges of a new truth supposedly democratized by the internet. We live in a world where there is a groundswell of new standards and an overturning of social and cultural ideas that now seem outdated and absurd in retrospect, yet the new standards change faster by the day, creating a fluid reinvention of “reality”— one which we have come to expect to change without examining the bedrock of “truth”.

BAD ART, an allegory, is one woman’s journey against definition, against gatekeepers, against standards built on falsities and against an “objectivity” which is not reflective of truth itself. The title depicts subjective definition, now almost humorous in its simplicity. But we use these judgements daily, working our way through our lives, in a binary fashion, defining that which is impossible to define. 

Zio Ziegler


Bernard Gwilliam & The Quantum Modernism .

   The idea for this exhibition began with wanting to change my name in the spring of 2016 when it occurred to me that the things I had done to date were not adding up to who I was becoming. I felt hemmed in by past interpretations of my work and choices I had made earlier. I had evolved and was moving in new directions. But in this world, Google collapses time and everything becomes another version of now. The more search results I examined about myself, the more I found misinterpretations of what I was open to, tangling me in a past in which I no longer felt connected. And so I started to think about the raw objectivity of making work and what it would mean to take identity itself entirely out of the composition. I fantasized that a name change could be the next frontier, allowing me a freedom in my work that previous generations of artists could more easily claim. In the present era, with artist personas often being as significant as their works, such an option becomes nearly impossible. I had heard rumors of artists who changed their names so they could explore work in new directions while safeguarding their anonymity and existing markets, but the more I thought about it, even this didn’t seem enough. I just wanted to be entirely free from the footsteps I had walked and many of the things I had sworn by that increasingly seemed to me to be anachronistic and irrelevant. It’s of course undeniable that we are a composite of selves, each step in our work leading to the next, but when examined through a digital lens, the web's reality brutally flattens the logic of the past. One’s digital self always lags, never fully reflects the present.  A vicious cycle keeps digital content outpacing emerging material. Since I grew with every experience, why couldn’t the perception of my work change with me? I craved the analog pace of the pre-internet world.

The web skews everything. Like it or not, we are locked into an identity heavy era, connected immutably with a collective unconscious that manifests itself with the cyclical nonstop generation of images. We rely upon our personas to navigate the vast web, trusting what’s familiar amidst a sea of deceptions--common “friends”, common “likes,” building a faith in ourselves with “followed bys”. The purity of truth becomes polluted from the ground up. Once an artist and his work constituted a singular reality, but now it’s all fractured and truth becomes whatever we invent it to be. We have begun to accept the multiplicity of reality, and thrown out the previous notions of singular reality. For instance, one’s digital geo-tag may be thousands of miles from where one is standing at the moment.  We accept this as a fact of modern existence. Therefore our perceptions of reality co-exist in different spheres at the same time. We find one image, owned by two authors, posted and reposted and always claimed as original. This leads to a corruption of language. Phrases that once had significance and weight are thrown casually into texts with no accountability. In the web world there is in fact no more singular self, but only mutable projections. Our cultivation of identity is our proxy for how much we value the impact of that identity in the social sphere.

Previous generations were limited in terms of location and resources. People could not hide from their actions, or generate new selves as easily. The provenance of a person, his neighbors and his community, provided an accountability and substance to each action. This status quo formed a void between those who "wandered"- for instance the cowboy civilizer vagabonds as depicted in western cinema- and the stakeholders who had a vested interest in the culture.

 In present times, accountability is a matter of choice, and voyeurism is the new standard. Though the same fingers on a keyboard may type it, a new identity can be contrived in a few strokes with the invention of a new username. However, as accountability fades, a Pandora's box is opened. With identity now so fractured, we lose the natural ease of being a unified self, as we are left with layers of identity scattered across micro-personas, which though irreconcilable in person are weirdly balanced in the logic of the web.

         Once there was a rational narrative arc to growth--even a prodigy took years to manifest. Wisdom was cultivated with time and experience.  But now with access to the roots of all human knowledge at our fingertips, prodigy seems instant. Like Athena, people emerge into the public consciousness fully formed. Instead of growing with these people by sharing their personal arc of life, we fall under the illusion that we know them instantaneously. The sad product of these circumstances is that the market does not train us to evolve with artists whose process contradicts itself in its evolution. Rather it teaches us to find a novel version of what we are looking for in another identity.  When Bob Dylan went electric, he was booed. His fans went to other acoustic musicians for a period. Viewers are trained to consume a brand named an artist, not an artist. The result is commercial resistance to self-contradictory artists. This forces artists to narrow their output to their market. It inhibits artists from stepping too far away from what is already vetted by the art establishment. The hand of the market has recently weighed very heavily on what it determines to be art history. The economic laws governing art world sanctioned artists exclude those at the margins. Therefore these artists are expected to survive the dissemination of their work through the web to a global audience with a short attention span over the course of an entire creative evolution—all under one name.  This leads us to a contradiction between the temperament of the viewer and the tendencies of the authentic artist.  The artist is expected to behave like a commodity, when innovation is the mother of art.

         Every time in history there is a substantial technological advance, art reacts to the substance of what the new technology has made accessible by deeming it anachronistic.  When the camera became a mass market phenomenon, realistic painting became redundant.  Following the invention of the printing press, the accessibility of authorship diminished the authority of what was once accepted as fact.  With the advent of the internet, the hierarchy of authority was entirely ruptured by cacophony.  The virality of content assumed its own credibility, geometrically expanding traditional forms of bibliography.   This latter development has proved to be a particular challenge to the art world as it attempts to outpace the dawning irrelevance of context.  Depriving the art world of context is in the process of creating a drought. The art establishment’s advantage had been in allowing context to determine value. Its bond with the market was that these contexts were telltales of art history to come.  Its clumsy evolution has been to attempt to supplant context with qualification. This brought a torrent of non-aesthetic process-driven objects to the forefront of the market.  The artists/conceivers, therefore, had to navigate a very precarious belief system that surrounded the value of their work.  One of the staples of their value was their identity, locking them into a trajectory of what the market would bear as acceptable future creations. This leaves but one path to redemption: the viewer and the unimpeachable relevance of the viewer’s interpretation. By creating works that operate independently of contrived systems, utilizing the distribution of the internet, the art will find its angle of repose in the cultural niches it most resonates with.

Examine the narrative arcs of mass cinema. Blockbuster cinema is accelerating a process that is becoming increasingly derivative. Essentially, we now watch the same films we have seen before, mashed up with other successful films from the past, cut together at a rate that accelerates yearly. The problems and resolutions, the car chases and the love making are sped up to the point where we are convinced we are seeing something new. With twists of sequencing we see the familiar again and again. This is the same safe familiarity that we employ scrutinizing the web. Using hyper relativity in order to deduce the media we consume, we blind ourselves to novelty. Culture fueled by hyper-relativity mirrors the infinite access of the web--in the way we meet people, look at paintings, or discover new food. Our experience is governed by comparison rather than objective observation and our own interpretation. As long as the mysterious mechanism which mints art history in a linear fashion keeps a step ahead of consumption, the Avant-guard will show up to acquire in the window of relevance. The derivatives grow smaller and smaller, leaving a shrinking trajectory for art history.

     With an increasing demand for content on the web, there will be a Malthusian catastrophe of originality. Because artists are not supported to explore self-contradiction, novelty will leap to a new source of stimulation rather than an appreciation of the artists’ organic development.

Maybe this is changing. Familiar social interaction may come to be the governing criteria for the way we engage with our content by opening up the possibility of interactivity with the material. The game theory of voyeurism organically leads to a shared alternative reality. Under these circumstances, the viewer and the artist enter a new symbiotic relationship in which the viewer experiences primitive pattern recognition and stylistic notes across media that connect him to the ethos of the artist. As we scale this involvement with each artist relating to multiple active viewers, all of whom have their unique relationship with and interpretations of the same work, we enter what could be the era of quantum modernism. Each painting was once allowed only to mean one thing in one context. Now each painting can mean many things to many people simultaneously. This underlines the fact that the internet is rupturing the context-driven singular hold that it has had for centuries on the way we have been conditioned to view art. In Quantum Modernism, meaning is infinitely adaptable.

So where does that leave us? Art will exist without emphasis on identity. It will be free to migrate from one mode of distribution to the next, from viewer to viewer, from one compression to another. As long as the work is interesting, as long as it has a utility for its viewer, it will survive through sharing alone. It will live past the sphere of the gallery, and the context of its author, and into realms it was never intended for. To some degree we are witnessing open source hieroglyphics, but maybe it’s even going beyond that. Perhaps the works themselves will be able to survive deconstruction and translation and emerge with something akin to a binary gesture on the other end.  In our era of fast identity generation for viewers, the most apt comparison is that of the Medusa Hydra, which until seeing a mirror could always outpace its own destruction. Quantum modernism is the mirror for all because it demands the viewer’s analysis. In this grand reversal of placing the concept in the viewers’ lap, viewers must project themselves into the work in order to make it relative to their core identity. In the process of integrating the work, like the mirror, into the viewer's psyche, the work can now define the viewer as a proxy and alternate manifestation of themselves. Call it epigenetic painting, or viral painting. It spreads by triggering emotional significance and relies on the common behavior of interactive validation. This opens and democratizes the access and posterity of art. Art returns to the signifier with the viewer becoming its vassal.  This progression is an organic extension of performative and conceptual practices in the alternate dimension of the web.

         This will help contemporary paintings, like ancient mythology, live past the confines of a throw-away commercial civilization. Much of the work will never be seen in person. Those viewers who will be able to access the picture on the web far exceed those who will see the original.  With technology once again changing the significance of art, the works that will ultimately survive, as always, will be works that address the human condition across time and culture. 

Thus art can reach back to its role as cultural artifact, meta-story telling device, and/or allegorical relic.  It can trigger a collection of information that adds to a more dynamic provenance, opening doors to validate new views about its significance, views that will on occasion transform the viewers themselves. Perhaps this reversal of long time singular meaning attached to art will catalyze into a contradictory whole, resolving the fractured identity that has been the product of early internet culture. Works of this nature will have the digital benefits of distribution with the old world accountability of personal artifacts. They will be governed less by who made them and more by who saw them and what effect they had. Self-discovery, consequently, becomes a product of our personal analysis of works, and each piece becomes a Rorschach test of our world view.

         Ultimately this eventuality will assure that our legacy won't remain in digital fragments, but instead will be the sum total of the pieces through which we define ourselves. Works of art, therefore, can again be mooring points for the self and guideposts for the soul in an era that tempts us to splinter ourselves. In my own case, Bernard Gwilliam, which is a composite of my paternal grandfather’s name and my mother’s maiden name, will for me be a marker along the way of my own personal struggle with ongoing re-invention.


To Arrive At Truth

It is said that without the orientation of trees and landmarks, bees lose their way and, in turn, are incapable of pollinating all the flowers in the field. This disorientation, it seems, is also present in our culture today. Yet, we continue building and maintaining our culture, squandering the landmarks that once served as maxims and touchstones guiding us to purpose and truth.

Maybe it’s an issue of saturation or self importance, but the same “cultural” engines generate too much, attempting to gratify us in the most immediate and topical fashion, so that the structure itself, like Marx’s view of capitalism, is becoming top heavy.  With the heightening of the formulaic and the omnipotence of big data, that which has an individual and unique voice can disappear under the waves of social media influences and reality TV personalities that are simply destabilizing reality further with every action. If the pre-internet world was once seen as a stage and we were all players, now we are all instantly qualified as the directors of our own realities. Today, the entry barrier to fact and truth is simply a matter of how much social traction we have. This poses a dilemma in which, since the origins and the outcome of information are obscured and so quickly sensationalized and forgotten, how can anything have a truly visceral impact upon us?

I’m not a puritan, but simply study the rise of casual and vulgar nudity on the web, the tools which help abbreviate literature, the increasingly simplistic and didactic formatting of cinema and the attention span of the western world, and then tell me that we have not lost our way to the flowers. For very little seems sacred anymore, and with our evolution into creatures of the instant, we have nearly taken a epigenetic cultural shift away from even being able to discern what is real, or to process and believe it when we see it.

Look back to the rise of critical theory in painting, academic language ruling over classical technical skill, and then cross-reference it with the popularity of television. It is well known that Clement Greenberg was a major reason behind the success of Jackson Pollock. In that disruptive period of art public opinion was increasingly influenced by TV. Maybe the masses, tired of suffering with the responsibility of interpreting what they didn’t understand, felt it was safer, easier, to hand the authority for their opinions over to the ‘more qualified experts’, the critics. Perhaps, this is when we, the American public, began to take a back seat to our own instincts, outsource our aesthetic opinions to assimilate into the Normal.

Now, plot this trajectory of passivity in opinion alongside the invention of the internet as it spawns the teenage art critic who believes he is capable of discerning, from a small mobile screen, the true quality of a painting. With his likes and comments to the masses, and the reduction of art into image and image into pixels, there are no longer scions of truth to navigate by. For we, as likers and commenters, are all qualified to be the critics, the democratized digital gallerists of tomorrow.  With social influencers supplanting critics, desensitizing and molding public opinion, I beg to ask the question, how is art in its most authentic raw humanistic form still relevant? It once took years of education and exposure to art history to cultivate taste. Now, with a public reared on mostly Kitsch and the simplistic, ‘artists’ who paint from traced photos attract as much interest as artists who paint from the imagination and subtlety of life.

So how does art in its purest form stand amidst this vast passive, yet superficially engaged culture? This series of paintings hopes to address and prompt a dialogue with the questions previously stated. It is my hope that by painting from a place of emotion, a place of confusion and curiosity, a place of exploration, the viewer can feel the authentic journey of each canvas. That if the game of painting is no longer purely conceptual, perhaps it is on a trajectory to be absolutely human.

It is my desire for these pictures to serve as a lifeline out of the lethargy of media consumption; to break form, provoke thought and simulate experience through the surface of a canvas. That, perhaps the paintings that are not over explained, hyper contextualized, and frustratingly displaced by their academic language can serve as seeds within the consciousness of the viewer. That, in a mimetic form, they will grow virally as they are viewed. That the realities of the canvas, can serve as emotional portals to make the viewer feel, think and find a coherent resonance with an artist they need know nothing about.

These works are painted to be truly subjective paintings. I have my rational in making each, but am reluctant to poison the objectivity of the viewing experience with my ideas. In many ways, these pictures simulate the time they are created in and attempt to go a few steps further. They have no accountability in their maker. As easily as you can open a new internet profile, I can paint in a new style. As fast as you think you can decrypt what I am trying to say, a new message will arise.  These paintings are existential devices, fractal in nature, that geometrically expand when tampered with.  These are pictures that elude singular definition. You must go back into your life and open a discussion around what the painting means to you. There is no right answer, just as there is no singular truth. They are built to be as impossible as the origins of the emotions they come from.

For ages human beings have rendered pictures, music and poetry around subjects which were just on the tip of their tongue, subjects that, like the grapes of Tantalus, which were always just out of reach. Their attempts are what formed the building blocks of cultural identity. The ability of some to somehow reach closer to the truth that many felt allowed their work to become the pillars, landmarks, of future attempts towards a similarly Sisyphean task. However humanity always seemed to revel in delayed gratification, until recently. Today, with little left to the imagination, who will form the future pillars, the next landmarks in the search towards this impossible task of sculpting the identity of the human condition? So this show, in all of its styles and figures and scenes and gestures, is as a closed journal with a page of two peaking out of the side, hopefully tempting the viewer. The purpose of this journal is not to define the journey for you, but instead to prompt you to find clues which will bring you inside of your own experience with the works themselves. They are but mirrors, some convex and some concave, depending on your projections into the works. These are paintings are ladders back to the dichotomy between easy and difficult perception, that vast space of the ‘aha moment’ where contradictions unite.  That epiphany, like the grapes of Tantalus, that you relish but can never entirely have, unless you allow the painting to work on you as you work on it.

Like the endless stories in “Arabian Nights” these paintings are composed from my experience but released in a way to keep you engaged towards your journey into your own consciousness. They release just as much as they need too, when you least expect it. They are experiential pictures that, hopefully, resist abbreviation and photography, pictures that make you feel compelled to argue for your interpretation. They are antidotes to the predictable, which I’m sure has worn as thin for you as for me. They can only exist in a quantum-like world, which cannot be extracted from itself.

For me these paintings are open source hieroglyphics – artifacts of globalization, pieces that demand answers from their viewers’ lives. As the artist I am simply the creator of a lock to which you have the key, a creator of questions and devices for provoking narratives and capturing moments that would otherwise be forgotten in your life. It is your job, as an active viewer, to expand upon the questions the paintings beg, and in that process begin a journey towards a truth that can never be spoken as such. For as objects to orient ourselves by on this path, they will serve as reminders of the existential imperative and a device in order to change perspective.

Open Source Hieroglyphics 


In todays reductive culture, the idea of the infinite is slowly collapsing. The word is no longer the bond, the frontier is “known”, Language no longer contains the linearity and meaning which we once blessed it with. We exist within concentric rings of contradiction, while ignoring the labyrinth with sit in the nexus of. We use search engines for direct answers rather than encountering the context of the answer we seek through discovering in its original text. The path which was once the goal, is now becoming a systematized device which delivers us from A to B as quickly as possible. Efficiency was once ease, and now promises to be the death of creativity. Paintings, like happiness are made in tension and resistance. True images come from the gauntlet of translation from mind to physicality, and from hand to canvas. What contorts of initial instinct, the errors one encounters along the way, the imperfections that exist outside of the mental vacuum, are what defines the work. Much as though one could say the underdog flourishes from his differences. What allows us to initially exist outside of normality, to live in a vacuum or in an infinite of our own, allows us to hone the ability to translate the infinite through ourselves. The individual who is rejected, is not softened by the banalities of society, rather sharped by the systems rejection. And so, In differentness, in individualism, man turns human bondage into his unique catalyst; much as a unique mountain range presents a different challenge for the river which wears it down throughout time. For willpower and difference, form habit, and a habit without the system of society is individual enough to persevere in the face of acceptance, for it is not acceptance which defines it. The wandering from A to B, the creation of one’s own path is what defines the conduit to the the infinite, The vast unknown is only on the other side of ones mind, or hand or person. And so it is this adversity which tempers individualism, and the efficiency of social systems which destroy creativity. We all need, as rivers, new mountain ranges to run into, and those challenges are what define us. The slow persistence of time and pressure to stone, is what wares the individual path for time immemorial. Of course, the river must run for long enough to build up its momentum to push through rock, and its initial path, cut through time, will define the way which it approaches that wall of rock, but alas, Differences beget differences, and the longer one strays from compromise, the easier it becomes to embrace the alienation which is inherent to the human condition. And so, In taking resistance, as the wet stone which sharpens the blade of individualism, one must find the rhythm between ease and tension, the iambic pentameter of duality in order to shape the images which translate your mind to the world. Within this adversity, this alienation lays the commonality of the human condition, the inverted search engine, the ladder which one cannot ascend until one casts it away. We climb from the inefficient, through the answers themselves, then through the questions passing into the unknown. The questions behind the questions, the motivations behind nature in giving us an infinite which our society in its confusion has inverted. For this vacuum is not a pie which can be divided, or an unknown which can be known, it is a world in and of itself mirroring but not adhering to the laws of man. A step away that cannot be crossed by mortal mind. It is so omnipotent the one must exist without the ego, without the self and without the necessity of I, in order to see it, and It cannot be seen because it is true difference itself. It is the sun which you cannot look into, the light which cannot be captured, and the question that cannot be phrased, it requires all of human literature and painting and creativity as a testimony to its ineffability, and so we collapse this unknown, into smaller and smaller unknowns, until unknowns are just bite size contradictions and concepts which change and tire with invention and time, and truths untie themselves are we chase the quantifiable infinite we choose to see, while ignoring the Vacuum which we cannot comprehend. And so I say reverse this system of efficiency into one which brings us closer to these unknowns, Break the systems which hold your mind to principals that satiate economic needs rather than human necessity, fly to close to the sun to experience it yourself. These individuals whom we admire so much, after time has shown us our errors in rejecting them, let them set the pace of human achievement. For this system is too easy, too complacent. It is the tension that pushes humanity towards creativity. The eb and flow of belief and will that battle towards this infinite data point. The will power that created gods on Olympus and paintings in cathedrals, the wills that found images, and narratives to be the closest approximations to the communal unknowns. For If we all truly don't know, if we all confront the infinite, does not that replace the alienation which we treasure in our own systems. Throw away the ladder in order to ascend it. Cast away the concept, and these mercenaries of pseudo erudition, with their canvases of the floor, and their anti-anti atheistic images, and embrace that which cannot be spoken. The sanctity of the unknown, the uncomfortably of that which stands alone. For all which runs again the norm becomes the anti, until the organism of societies norm consumes that which is different and assimilates to the idea which itself one cast away. Art for arts sake, rather than art for art histories sake. Let us return to the hieroglyph, without the infinite we previously had in god, and rather a new infinite within ourselves and comprehension. Let us, witness the transience of concepts, the the timelessness of the human condition. Make the infinite open source, the unknown a device in owns own unknowns. A spark in order to light tomorrow nights fire. Lets push back past De Tocqueville and Hobbs and the enlightenment and back to a time when Christianity toppled Rome, and then to when man worshiped a god which his ancestors named and created. It is within the human tradition, and within the human condition, to make the world as understood as possible, and to let the arrogance of the understanding become our demise. Be it hedgehog of fox, today's man cannot escape that fact that his efficiency has burnt his bridge to the unknown, his knowning and facts and acceptances have destroyed his ability to wonder and evolve. Let these open source hieroglyphics serves as a scion of the unknown. As temples with which to wonder again. As sparks to rekindle imagination, or mirrors with which to probe through and self examination. Let these narratives, which only come through me as, I once passed through the mountain, come through you in their inversion of your usual searching. Let them be more expansive than you originally found them, let them be as organic as the ideas they germinate within you. For these images are the catalysts of your thought, as they I was simply the catalysts of their creation. The subconscious, the unknown, must exist without definition in order to be the unknown which we desire knowing. The Tao that can be spoken is not the real Tao. Let these images, as Rorsoche tests do, lead you to understanding which only rejection fosters in children, which inefficiency, ironically enough, lead to efficiency and innovation. If the world functions from equal and opposite swings of the pendulum, it is time to live within the unknown again, to search instinctually towards the resistance which once defined the characters that created today. Embrace all facts of the character, both your Ahab, your Queequeg and your Ishmael in order to tackle that which cannot be held. For the Ladder which you've be climbing, must be cast away in order to ascend it.  



The Psyche's Gestures.

With the capacity to easily generate an image, and a truth with that image, the value of an image slowly fades and in turn so does the truth. 

We are defined by our struggles, yet somehow avoid them at any cost because patience is no longer economically viable for the pace of the world. We see art objects which are anti- aesthetic, making the entry barrier simply the ability to transcend the mass visual and enter into a more cerebral engagement with the work. To use an apt cliche- We can no longer judge books by their covers because the covers are either so numerous, or so consciously anti aesthetic, that they evade engagement by camouflaging themselves against those only interested in surface. But my question is, say all artists where all to follow these queries of "innovation" each trying to find a way to reduce the process of painting to a new way of anti Image making rather than playing in its vast history of aesthetics- and the work becomes so detached from beauty that it's reliant on its context? What happens when we are no longer here to provide the context? When those curators are long gone, and the common person mistakes what was once valuable for a piece of trash? Do we follow the curators choices from the past or that of the populous, and are the two mutually exclusive if one must always be elevated from the other ? The reliance of the anti aesthetic work on the institution leaves art for arts sake far behind, and simulates an environment where art is purposely getting as far from what we "know" to be art as possible. Yet Duchamp's piece without a signature is simply a toilet, and an Art object without a Museum is simply a testimony to the fulfillment of a societies hierarchy of needs, art as artifact- as a reach for posterity from the people. With the commodification of artifact comes a cultures iterations and dialogues, or context heavy emphasis rather than that of Art which transcends its environment. But if an image is no longer representative of the truth- rather the truth we want it to be, isn't it more necessary for art to be an articulation of a truth we all must acknowledge- that of the human condition? There must be tiers of inaccessibility for desire to be present within art, but it seems as though the market is trying to fabricating history faster than we live it, instead of focusing on that which will have an impact for posterity- without its context . If we can learn any lesson from the curation of history and the selectivity of memory- it's that art objects survive out of their emotional impact rather their projected economic value. If art is a vehicle to speak a larger "truth " to the soul in the era of the destabilization of reality - then why choose objects that further distort our notion of truth. The survival mechanism of soul in some art comes from a knowledge of aesthetic principals and a connection to a emotional source melded into an image that evokes feeling, and from feeling thought about feeling. Not an image that evokes thought and through thought, feeling. We must feel to remember, and to make a society that is so used to images feel again through the catalyst of an image- the images must have an emotional truth to share as well as an intellectual one. How can art mirror culture, or be responsible to mirror culture, if culture is no nothing more than a series of reflections from one mirror to the next. Culture now a days is a series of economic and intellectual entry barriers, "truths" perpetrated by those with an interest in holding the mirrors- and in only able to generate more and more fractured and iterative products.  

We stay within this prism of images and dialogue, because to leave it means to engage head on with larger more ineffable truths, and because we live in a reductive society- we believe all truths already exist within a Forrest of mirrors called the Internet. So as society reaches towards a hyper referential hyper efficient status and Hobbesian ideal, we leave that we gives us the power to actually live history that lasts longer than the engagement in the image which simulates a history to be made. How can we have post internet art if we have not truly seen the consequences of the Internet. It is impossible to find truth without perspective unless you are sourcing the emotional thread that's existed for time immemorial. Place the art objects we value today in the trash for tomorrow's generation- and let's see what survives when they must choose what is art and what is not. Art is larger than context, it's larger than the negation of Beauty and a dialogue with the posts and the antis. Art is the only unquantifiable asset left to us- the only thing visually which we can find a refuge for our humanity within. With the invention of the personal camera came the negation of the image as art, and with the globalization of the camera and the supreme access of the image comes the power of the curator. And with this division of art object and regular image comes the emphasis on context and intention and credential. And with the emphasis on context comes an art object dependent on its framework of though, and a populous who can no longer understand where to place their value. And with this comes the death of the infinite and supreme unhappiness and the rise of art which speaks to the infinite itself. Art which transcends words, and museums and the dumpsters of the future. Which is somehow preserved in the mind, which resembles a history lived rather than a history that's been assembled by those with a vested interest in it taking place. And this is why I try, in my humble way to paint figures, from the inside out. Why I try to used surface and tool to render something which in turn renders my identity. Why I try to build a vacuum as a studio and paint not from a negation of today's culture, but as a way to feel a truth I can never articulate. This is not art Brute, this is not outsider art, this is art free of context in the age of mechanical reproduction. These figures are experiments, are testimonies to the beauty of contradiction, to the inconsistency of life, homages to memories, fractures images and emotions that have made it into the vacuum. These are made as an attempt to reach towards the essence of karma and spirit, to provide an infinite through the window of an image. To serve as a starting place for though, not as a search box towards the known. These are paintings that come from inward, and go outward, and will keep going for as long as humanity deems them necessary. They will carry your secrets, your projections, your ideas, your doubts and desires- this is the canvas as surrogate soul and memory. A piece of a mystery which cannot be solved, a nod to what we can never figure out, or plot and productize while keeping that which defines it alive. These paintings are yours, not mine.  
And as images and alternate realities, and facades without foundation continue to surround you, it is my hope that these images can serve as a rudder to navigate that truth with is A Priori. There is a synthetic seduction in the media that is so easy to consume, a feedback loop which closes tighter with each engagement, a satiation with fades the more we see the presence of the drug as structure itself. And in this ease of consumption, the palatable happiness fades with the lack effort to consume. We are defined by our efforts and struggles, and without them happiness is impotent. It may take years of this slick pseudo culture until one craves more struggle, but it will come and the struggle will not be in the referential rather in the vulnerability it takes to engage something emotionally.  
And as the world becomes more efficient and more quantifiable, that which remains enigmatic will last and that which doesn't need context will always be free.