Friday, 11 December 2009

John Baldessari

His most recent work consists primarily of film stills of faces and bodies that are largely covered over by layers of paint or collage or altered by the superimposition of paint over the foreheads and eyebrows. The fact that the faces are partially concealed makes them impossible to identify. The images are charged with the glamour of the advertising and film world. The frequently present element of humour in the compositions plays with the viewers’ expectant attitude by allowing them free scope for association and interpretation and by offering a wide range of possible meanings. The black-and-white photographs are partially coloured, whereby the accentuated coloured facial features are particularly striking. Baldessari uses colours as a kind of colour code. For instance in Raised Eyebrows / Furrowed Foreheads (with Apple) a woman is shown about to bite into a red apple suggesting the associative connotation of red with danger. Or the pictures of the guitar player with a blue guitar in front of a blue background refers to the romantic mood of the music, whereas the photo placed higher up of a furrowed forehead and eyebrows more readily suggests a dissonant piece of music. Thus Baldessari reinterprets the fragments of the pictures according to his own ideas. At the same time, his collages plumb the depths of an in-between world, which we can only intuit, from stories with visible and invisible elements.

An interview with Baldessari and Frieze Art : CLICK

No comments:

Post a Comment