Quince Cabbage Melon Cucumber
25 February- 24 March 2016
Private View 6- 9pm
Thursday 25 February
Quince, Cabbage, Melon and Cucumber, the title of a Sanchez Cotan Bodegon Still Life.
The yonic sliced open melon and phallic cucumber have been interpreted as a representation of his suppressed appetite in a monastic life of abstinence, an act of sublimation.
Sublimation as discussed in Notes on Camp, the sensibility of Camp proposed by Susan Sontag in 1964. The notion of Neo Camp, proposed by Chris Sharp in 2012 in response to Sontag's essay, could be relevant to the work here? Neo Camp: the domestication of camp.
Arcadian images of nudes, fresh fruit and flowers. In closely cropped canvases the ripe flesh of fruit and vegetables obscure a neo classical face or a crotch (the fig leaf a device for expurgation).
Food like flesh, something to be consumed. Fruit and vegetables have erotic connotations, a culinary sensuality.
Hessian disrupts the otherwise sensual texture of the paint, the surface a euphemism for androgenic hair.
The vase is another euphemism, this time explicit. Fetishising the domestic in the tradition of sexualising something everyday and banal. The sculptures are an extension of painting in to plastic space, clay has a tactile sensuality, a latent eroticism. A vase is an orifice, a vessel for virile fresh flowers. The domestic prop becomes a caricature of a fertility symbol, a Venus. But fails to arouse.
Life drawing, still life painting and craft evoke the naive practice of the Sunday painter, legitimised through the lens of camp.
Source material serves as an initial reference, but beyond allows for abstract planes to become more dominate through process. Drawing offers an initial removal from the source material, painting a further step, the image becoming increasingly ambiguous.
There is no explicit narrative. Motifs trigger recognition in the viewer, a visual lexicon leads to a series of free associations leaving room for interpretation.
Susan Sontag, Notes on Camp, Partisan Review, Fall 1964
Chris Sharp, Camp + Dandyism = Neo Camp?, Kaleidoscope, Spring 2012