Philip von Zweck
If this exhibition had a name it might be free street. Since it does not, feel free to stop reading now.
“Free street” in this case would be a reference to Greil Marcus's description of the project of the utopian movements including the SI and Punk that have been so inspirational to me for so long; but also a description which can be applied to art, democracy, skateboarding, love and pretty much everything else that is actually important. Marcus said “The desire begins with the demand to live not as an object but as a subject of history- to live as if something actually depended on ones actions- and that demand opens onto a free street.”1 The paintings assembled here are the result taking my own advice, of pushing my way past the things, the junk and finding- or forcing- myself onto that free street. They are not illustrations, they are not provocations, they are not theoretical, they are not conceptual, there is nothing to get, they are not the result of some clinical process, they are not left to chance, they are not consistent, they do not correspond to rules, they do not reference each other, they are not smart, they are not dumb, they are not windows looking into or out of anything. They are pigments suspended in formerly wet solutions of various kinds applied using a variety of techniques to cloth stretched over a wooden frame, now hung on walls.
They are just some of the very many that I have made over the past few years. They are a specific few- these are the ones, though worked on in various ways, for widely divergent amounts of time and utilizing radically different quantities of both labor and material have ended up in a state that I find compelling for reasons I am not able to articulate, and this is important- they have moved beyond being an object or thing or idea whose mere existence I can mount a nuanced defense for and into the realm of being things- paintings, that I just like.
And I hate this, and I love it. And yet I like them enough and can claim authorship over them enough to feel comfortable with them existing in the world, removed from me while still tethered to my name. Their existence is simple, they are paintings to be looked at. I hope you like them but I will not try to tell you how or convince you why, only state unequivocally that I do.