Ryder Richards & Brett Herron [Two Person collaborative exhibition]
West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV
May 5th- June 5th, 2014
The practice of running an art gallery necessarily alters the mentality of the artist. The rote installation, logistics coordination, and communication with stereotypical artists is ultimately frustrating to a creative mind, spawning the creatively vibrant retaliation that is seen in artist-run spaces. The collaboration between Herron and Richards is based on the shared experience of running galleries inside their studios (The Cube), reacting to the quasi-magical transformation of situating objects in a white space as a means to fulfill the work’s role. Installment reacts to art world labor as self-referential to studio practice, invoking a series of aesthetic cues or gallery standards as a means of subversion and validation.
Richards’ works in the exhibit are framed trompe l’oeil drawings with content referencing his methods for installing student work as art world commentary. As such, they include snarky post-it-note labels Richards used to locate wall placement before marking hangar placement. The series title, Le Bore, is French for the element Boron, a convenient mix of “bore” and “moron” while phonetically referencing “labor.” The drawings offer a clarification of the structure that maintains the art’s elevated position while referencing through text-image another work, which can only be imagined.
Herron’s collaborative labor is the installation of the framed works in a manner that will act as new-casualist or neo-formal sculpture, at once refuting the content of the framed works and utilizing another, (currently popular) aesthetic trope to further validate the alternative status of his artificial, yet obviously real and successful, gallery. As such, we hope the context of the exhibit operates on several levels of art-insider self-awareness while presenting exciting visual and conversational potential.