Redaction of Labor II [2014]

One pint of “Home Depot Orange,” 2×4’s, sheetrock, plaster, white paint, labor
Ground Floor Gallery [link], Nashville, TN

Constructing a white wall over the top of a white wall in a gallery speaks of duplicating an aesthetic that becomes invisible through it’s cultural ubiquity and function: meant as carrier rather than as content. The new white wall produced uses the previous wall for support, essentially acting as a large-scale painting “hung” on the wall, identically referencing the previous construction.

During the construction a “Home Depot Orange” rectangle, the dimensions of a piece of sheetrock, is painted on the original wall as a reference to the ubiquitous DIY hardware store and, more interestingly, to function as a conceptual, minimalist, color-field painting. The shape is a symbolic marker of high modernist painting inevitably acting as a “frame” or “model” for content, the orange shape absorbing focus and contemplation with its graphic vacancy. Meanwhile, the shape speaks of the ease, cheapness, and speed of construction and labor, which are both its creator and its death.

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In building over the orange rectangle several moments occur referencing Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado.” Through manual labor the immurement of the living painting renders it visually inert and secret, but no less potent conceptually. This work will remain while the gallery rotates exhibitions, in a small way providing persistent historicity, yet necessarily invisible and unknown behind the larger “painting” of the new wall, whose constant utility discourages investigation.

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