Friday, March 16, 2012

new paintings

welcome to spring, not that winter was very wintery here.  it has been in the 80s the last 2 days and it is supposed to continue.  the plants ALL are budding or already sprouting leaves and blossoms.  the daffodils are popping yellow everywhere. spring is still 3 days away.  it seems that may came in march, which is ok, so long as it is still may in may.  i'm not up for july heat in spring time, or really in summer time either.  in a couple of weeks we'll be setting up at the Indiana Artisan Marketplace at the State Fairgrounds and our booth will look significantly different this year.  There will not be a lot of functional ceramics at our booth, but there will be 2D work.

I've been in the new studio space, as much as i can, and am trying to look at the space with a new attitude.  not having clay to rely on feels a bit like groping for a light switch in the dark, but i'm making due.  i've been painting the last week or so, and have six nearing completion.  i haven't painted one of these structures in a couple of years, so starting back took a few days, but i feel like i made progress enough to have a few nice works.  i'm trying to paint in the muted palette that i created last month and i'm using stencils to create the imagery rather than block prints.  i love using stencils to paint with.  it allows me to have repeatable imagery and sharper, cleaner lines than i can typically do freehand (because i refuse to spend money on any decent brushes).  instead of spraying the stencils like i did on my county fair installation, i'm brushing them on. using the brush i have a bit more control.  the spaces make it so i have to really work around the raised edges and corners, so spraying on this is out of the question.  i'd just end up with blurs and drips. none of these have titles yet.  but they will.

this piece has 2 rows of mirror tiles down the middle and the idea is that you see a portion of your face in the mirror and the portion of the stenciled man-in-a-neck-tie plays off of the image you see of yourself.  the environment is meant to feel like city anonymity, a bit distant, but close under the street lights.  the man in the neck tie is your non-descript neighbor and you are supposed to see part of you in him.  i don't know if this actually works, but that's what i hoped for.

opening day. it's almost baseball season.  my hope was for it to feel like mid-summer late afternoon.

super hero watching over the city.  this piece is inspired by comic books and a savior complex.  the cupcake pans make great color dots to fight off the evil neon dots of damien hirst.

industrial farming and a water pump.  i live in indiana, i think about the shit they do to the earth constantly.  it makes me nervous that this is the regionalism of today.  there are still barns and sunsets, but there's also processing plants, giant seed mills, monsanto, dow, chemical sprays, GMOs and CFOs and semis to take it everywhere.

the wolf and the sheep.  this is another one with a mirror.  you see yourself, the hand holds the remote.  the talking head speaks of the wolf beneath the sheep, then back to you in the mirror.  i'm trying to comment on how media effects our opinions.

the living city.  the city is constant movement to me.  the traffic and the crowded anonymous feel.  there is a quietness in the noise of somewhere like NYC or chicago or LA or SF.


Patricia G said...

I really like these. Restricted colours. I like your use of objects being worked into the compositions too. Where did you get inspiration for using objects and unorthodox materials?

Zach Medler said...

thanks patricia...good question...a couple of things act as inspiration for these works. first, a midwestern pack rat/hoarder mentality. second, the desire for multiple surfaces in one painting to tell layered and multi-dimensional stories. and 3rd, the work robert rauschenburg and louise nevelson. i love their assemblage work, both of them. but more than their intentions with their work, i simply wanted use the 'form' of assemblage to tell a story that is innately midwest.

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