Friday, September 28, 2012

The Truth is Too Convoluted @ C. Emerson Fine Arts

Kim Anderson, "Reflex"

C. Emerson Fine Arts' The Truth is Too Convoluted show features  Kim Anderson and Caui Lofgren, a well-known pair of artists from Bradenton. Both of them teach, she at New College, he at a Bradenton school.

Kim Anderson, "Ritual"

Kim Anderson takes old snapshots, movies and movie frames and paints from them. Camera stills in general and snaphosts in particular depict time in very thin slices. When viewing our own photographs we have back and fore stories on either side of the image. This provides a temporal context as well as that concerned with the constellation of facts about what is within the frame. When these things are removed, the image changes, even more so when transduced into a painting.

With film stills, this isolation brings in the in-between moments, as opposed to the usual highlights that tend to be photographed or moments contrived/posed by photographers and models alike. Things are revealed that even an astute-eyed observer might miss. Buoyant when freed from their referents or their memory, they become like bits of messenger RNA, strange attractants to confabulation, imagination, and the viewer's own memory.

Kim Anderson, cels from animation titled "Salome"

On top of all this is the inescapable feel of nostalgia in these pictures and the human fantasy and longing for a paradaisical earlier time. This is always with us in art, but is currently enjoying a resurgence in figurative and landscape work.

Kim Anderson, "Salome"
A lot of artists experiment, flirt or flit with art in a variety of dimensions, usually progressing from 2D to 3D and 4D. In this show is an animation short by Ms. Anderson. The entire sequence of drawings is displayed (see illustration above) while it plays in a video loop in a frame just to the right of it. Unlike most movies, this one benefits greatly from the inexact registry.The little staccato jumps in the frames raise questions about the our perception of time as a seamless sequence and quanta of time. It is a brilliant conceptual piece.

Caui Lofgren, "Owl"

Caui Lofgren plays with pop icons via sectioning and rejoining them, generating chimeras from the distortions and new symmetries. He leaves just enough of the original that we know conceptually what the original looks like That tension between vision and the mind's eye becomes a wellspring of new associations.

Congratulations to Kim and Caui and to Lori Johns and C. Emerson Fine Arts for a good show.

--- Luis

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