dayoutlast is a record of my direct engagement with mostly contemporary art, mostly Los Angelean.

As this blog has evolved since its 2010 inception, so has my perspective. What I once perceived as central within the investigation was what was central, literally, within the photographic frame that I shared here. While still an important consideration, such thinking has also given way to more peripheral considerations, ones also accompanied occasionally by text (written manifestation of thought) and the oscillations between them. What's missing here are larger unknowns surrounding issues of presentation and representation; the amount of time and space it actually takes to accomplish such first-hand observations; and the quandaries between documentation and interpretation.

Despite my attempt to communicate here with image and text what is essential in some respect about the artwork, neither representation should ever be considered a substitution for the primary viewing experience. Of course, occasionally there are exceptions.

Most of the time, these posts are merely remnants---residual fragments---from my last day out.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Harmony Hammond "Recent Paintings" @ Susanne Vielmetter

Bandaged Grid #7, 2016-2017
Oil and mixed media on canvas
74.5 x 61 inches

Robert Rauschenberg/Jasper Johns (fabric associations/surface qualities). Patched. Covering up the hardware. Mends falling apart to reveal a red interior. Wrapped. Painted. Shabby chic. Paper mache. Made to be broken. Planned obsolescence. Accepted demise.

Chenille #5, 2016-2017
Oil and mixed media on canvas
60.5 x 120.5 inches

Chenille #4, 2016-2017
Oil and mixed media on canvas
88.5 x 62.5 inches

Undone. End of the rope. Frayed ends. Strap undone. Reveal the inside. Pants and shirt. Warehouse door. Ware. Wear.

Chenille #3, 2016-2017
Oil and mixed media on canvas
88.5 x 62.5 inches
Off-white. Nuts or nipples. Acne. Polyps.

Chenille #2, 2016-2017
Oil and mixed media on canvas
88.5 x 72.5 inches

Straps and scraps. Remnants. Poverty. Povera.

On the surface, white or off-whites seem unify and bind the view of this work and hold (potentially) the key to their raison d'aitre. To complicate matters, the digital white balance from my phone camera seems to be at odds with the actual viewing conditions. As should be clear by now, this is one of the sticking points in my viewing, in my blog, and in my own work as well.  Either the direct, unmediated view of art has value or it doesn't for certain works.  I think the comparison between both and knowing the difference is one of the reasons for this blog and it accepts such shortcomings to a point. Aside from whatever phenomenological disparities exist between the artwork and its photographic reproduction, the general form and concepts cans still be considered, at least provisionally.

So, you have paintings or whatever you want to call these artworks, that indicate a more or less unife surface, the doing and undoing of surfaces, the patching and attaching and overlapping of sections,  and also machine-age referents such as doors, train/truck panels, and whatever other hard, metal surfaces can be covered, bandaged, healed into softer and more permeable forms.  There is an undercurrent of traditional masculine and feminine sensations and sensibilities that are nicely integrated here as well as tinkered sections of pre-digital industry.

With titles including Chenille and Bandaged, we are led to think about soft, woven fabrics and fibers made for healing, as if in some way, there is both an attempt to reinvent the surface of painting by covering up its previous layers while simultaneously seeking its ground zero or its a clever way to work with such notions without much concern. There is enough care and attention to each section within each panel to suggest a greater value for both.  In fact, both may be a good way to consider how a fragmented, unifying, and emotionless exterior gives way in places to something else bursting at the seams from within.  At this point, it's difficult not to think about human bodies, parts and whole held together tenuously, and lurking, hidden possibilities of all kinds.

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