Not Cool or Stoic

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Judy Garland Smile, 2012 Doily, Expanding Foam, Enamel Paint, Mylar Balloon And Ribbon 22" X 72" X 14"
Not Cool or Stoic
Curated by: Paul Hopkin

2153 W 21st Street
Chicago, IL 60608
January 27th, 2012 - February 18th, 2012
Opening: January 27th, 2012 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

South Side
Saturdays, noon to 5pm
photography, mixed-media, video-art, sculpture


slow has partnered with ACRE to host Not Cool or Stoic as a part of ACRE's year-long series of exhibitions by 2011 ACRE summer residents. The exhibition features new work from Chuck Jones and from ACRE resident Matthew Schlagbaum. 

Not Cool or Stoic

Colored theory. Not color for color’s sake, but named colors for linguistic associations.

Matthew Schlagbaum begins with greyscale, a faux grisaille, and slips in a technicolor magic schism. Unlike the filmic precedent, Matthew is invested neither in generating delight, nor affirming faith in humanity or individuality. More like Matthew is illuminating the shameless manipulations that drive familiar stories.

Glittering gold. Black and white and read all over.

Chuck, a gorillalike hulking man always decked out in Carhartts and work shoes, spins a yarn with earnest ennui. Deeply sentimental moments become meditational gems. But his laser focus meanders—the moment was truly heart-felt, but Chuck is open enough to respond just as deeply to the next. Follow his lead and you may end up with your emotional guard puddled around your ankles, not knowing the differences between true grit, heart-strings, or even what is funny.

Chuck and Matthew both reside somewhere shaken, somewhat glum. Not cool or stoic. Each embraces his own direct emotional responses, and calls upon a viewer to dive into a moment. But each is driven toward a view of reality that pulls back the curtain to reveal something as it is complete with contradictions, flaws and untidy conclusions.