Good Children, New Orleans
This show closes today.
2. This show is a total experience. The lighting and sound piece, the handmade sconces, aluminum string curtain, and benches lend the space the character of a chapel or meditation room without that quality feeling overwrought. Compared to the more developed art in the show, this is furniture and atmosphere that achieves its goal without over-reaching or detracting from the art.
3. The work itself consisted of walk-mounted pieces that were sculptural and sculptural pieces, which retained their two-dimensional roots. The wall-mounted pieces were made of wood and layered painted aluminum. Three chalices on pedestals with mirrored surfaces were built of stacks of cut rings. I could go on describing the work but the way I experienced it was immediate and not analytical. It was on a second pass that I began to try to decipher how they were made.
4. There are two works that incorporate the image of a chain, one large and one smaller. The larger was structurally admirable and very attractive. While evidently a serious endeavor to fabricate, it did not rise above high-end design. I found the chain motif both too empty and too loaded, not in sync with the rest of the show, but not opposing it in an interesting way.
5. Is this Ayahuasca art? It’s true, there is something of the Western artist meets DMT-inspired spirituality. There is a piece in two parts that resembles an Inca totem character. The most fine-lined abstractions have a trip-on-this attraction. When the artist confirmed that he had spent time in South America (Peru) I was interested but not surprised. (I didn’t ask about Ayahuasca.) But the fabricated, machine-assisted geometry, the obvious labor and sober attention to each piece save these works from being woo-woo. There is influence without cultural pickpocketing.
6. These objects surpass psychedelia or abstract decoration, though they utilize the vocabulary of both. Some pieces were more optically complex and others more directly geometric. Their coexistence in the show made me think of how the brain, or more accurately consciousness, has different and polar modes: waking and sleeping, sensory and cerebral, active and passive. In the end what I can say is that this work was expansive and visually intelligent. I am not sure if that will make sense without seeing the work. The artwork engages the viewer to the detriment of distraction. It promotes being in the moment, which is to say meditation, which is to say, the experience of art.
7. Titles. This is a touchy subject with me. I applaud this artist’s solution. I don’t want to write it here because I always look at the work without titles first and want to allow other viewers the same discovery. Suffice it to say that he went beyond Untitled, my default preference in a lot of cases.
8. Adam, thanks for the tip. Joshua Edward Bennett, thanks for the experience. What a cool homecoming.