"Me With My Belt Wrapped Around My Head And You Just Sittin' There"
It takes two people to make a joke. Here Chris and I slip easily into our regular conversational roles, straight man and wise guy. Rowan and Martin, Reiner and Brooks, Martin and Lewis, Farley and Spade, Lorenzo and Launcelot. Chris's works have a dignity and an aloofness to which I can only aspire. He might bristle at my characterization of our show as a comedy routine. At least, I'm sure he'll roll his eyes. But his works have a singularity and profundity to which my puttering provides the necessary comic relief. I'm happy to play that part.
Chris and I like to give each other presents. So far these include
Stacks of comic books
Books we produce ourselves
A Stanley Brothers CD
Some Drum Pads
Some small sculptures............
For this show we had been talking about making some books. The idea a show where Chris presented his bootleg of Kippenberger's classic interview (now out of print. His enthusiasm for this text is reassuring to me.), and I was going to present my recent book on John McLaughlin and Forrest Bess. That ran into some problems, so I changed my plan and decided to show newest publication, THE New York MAGAZINE, which was recently rejected for inclusion in the Frieze Art Fair. Chris has been doing more painting lately, and I have been doing more sculpture, so we thought we would fill out our oeuvres by presenting the books as paintings and sculptures respectively, to contrast with the more traditional paintings and sculptures we are showing. That kind of hit a wall as well. So it looks like we will just be showing some Art, and that makes writing this press release a bit difficult, because in order to do that, I must speak with a forked tongue.
The silence of Chris's paintings should make it easier for me to write about them. These newest works of his differ radically from the works in his last two shows. Here, he has forgone the technique of landscape building through accumulation of strokes and now makes additions and subtractions to the works only in such a way that each one of these alters the painting entirely.
There is also a pretty radical break from elements that might have once bore a relation to figure or landscape. Now it is kind of whole hog. There is a lot of work in these pieces of Chris's and mine. In his case, it (dis)appears in the form of the hundreds of paintings beneath the surface of the one you see. In mine, it is shut into drawers and dispersed into other works related to the works here, but not themselves present. And of course it is all added to by Matt, Gracie, Jose, Amanda, Stephanie and Dave. Me and Chris have those people to thank for making us look so good here.