Thoughts on Richard Prince and the State of Appropriation Today

Richard Prince was in some hot water for taking a bunch of Instagram pics, adding comments, then presenting it as his own work and selling it for insane sums of money.

But is he wrong? Or his the message his work communicates saying something important about the times we are living in?

Channel Changes

I’ve decided to revamp and refocus my YouTube channel. The focus will be less about a chronological vlog about me paintings, and will instead be more geared towards sharing ideas and advice I’ve heard and learned from the many mistakes I’ve made along the way.

Kyle Paints 2013: Part 2 – The Easy Painting That Kicked my Ass

I thought this would be an easy one.
I was wrong.

What appeared to be a simple, minimal easy painting I could fart out in a hurry turned out to be the biggest struggle I’ve had with a painting in a long time.

Kyle Paints 2012: Pt. 3: Some Background Info on My Style

This body of work I’m going to be putting together might make more sense with an understanding of where it’s coming from, and how I got started working in this style.

Back in 2005, I was working a summer job as a landscaper; I knew that come September, I’d be starting my thesis year at art school, and I wanted to hit the ground running, rather than aimlessly wandering between styles and ideas. I laid out all these intricate plans, and mentally sketched out images that I would later paint.

At the time, I was making a lot of work that looked like this. While it doesn’t necessarily photograph all that well, the iridescent and metallic colours glimmer and shift like jewels, creating a very alluring effect. The challenge was integrating this technique into larger images an compositions, rather than the all-over textures I had been producing.

September arrived, and I started testing out my ideas; and every single one of them bombed horribly. Over the next four months, I produced nothing but garbage.

Continue reading Kyle Paints 2012: Pt. 3: Some Background Info on My Style

Kyle Paints 2012: Pt. 01 – Introduction

Over the next several months, I’m going to be putting together a body of work for my next big art show. Typically, whenever this happens, artists disconnect from the outside world and disappear into their cave for several months, only emerging once the work is complete – or the deadline has arrived (usually the latter).

For this body of work, I’m going to try something a little bit different. Rather than producing something in private, and only releasing the full finished series of work, along with a poorly written essay filled with confabulations, non-sequiturs and trendy art jargon to back it up, I’m going to pop up every week or so, pull back the curtain, and invite you into my studio. (virtual invitations only. Invitation does not extend to the physical world.) Discuss what I’ve been thinking about, explain how I see my work (note: what you get out of it may vary), I’ll talk about where I plan on taking it. But mainly, this series will be about my working process.

Continue reading Kyle Paints 2012: Pt. 01 – Introduction

From a Quick Laugh to Frustration

If you’ve been paying attention to this place, or any of the social media venues I frequent, you’ve probably heard quite a lot about the “DRM Box” project Brad and I have been working on.

But it’s been dragging on for months now, and I’m getting a little frustrated, so here’s a little behind the scenes scoop on the project.

The DRM Box was originally envisioned by me as a quick, week-long project to post online as a little internet joke. In my eyes, it just had to be good enough to hold up to video, then we would be done with it. Brad insisted that if we are going to do something, we should do it right, using nothing but the best materials and fabrication techniques for the job. It should be treated as a sculpture, where everything must be perfect, so after the video is made, we have a sculpture that is gallery-worthy. This is a situation where I do think Brad was right. This is art; we aren’t cranking out mass-produced wares for consumption, we are trying to make a unique object to express an idea that we are passionate about, and doing our best work is important.

Of course, going from, “just tape some crap together and hope it sticks together long enough for the shoot” to, “it must be perfect” necessitates a bit of a schedule correction. So, we went from a scheduled week-long build to an estimated month-long build. Then something big came up and my personal schedule changed, cutting out our free time together to about one third of what it once was.

These two factors lead to a project that started to really drag on and go nowhere for a long time.

But, this was ok, because we had a gallery show lined up for the project. The extra work was all worth it. They would be shown in a gallery after all!

Then the show never materialized. I don’t know what happened, but the show fell through.

So here we are, 10 months later, with a project that is well built, and it will be used for a quick little video, then put aside as we get to work on the next project.

But when you spend this much time with a project, when this much effort has been put into it, it becomes hard to treat it like a quick joke. It starts being something that you take seriously. And because we have been talking about it for so long, I fear the audience might also have begin taking this project seriously. I am worried that as far as the DRM Box Project is concerned, the humour is lost.

Why People Hate Art: Our SoOnCon 2011 Talk

I edited the talk down from 28 minutes into a much more focused 18 minute presentation. The other half will be posted shortly (well…eventually) but here is the meat of the talk.

If you want the background to this talk, and don’t feel like digging through my earlier posts, here is a brief summary of this talk and how it happened:

Brad Blucher and I were invited to give a talk at the TIFF Bell Lightbox for SoOnCon 2011.

The topic for our presentation was “why people hate art”. Using examples of things we have experienced first hand, we launched into an attack on the pervasiveness of obscurantism masquerading as deep insight within the art world.

Art is often nothing more than a footnote to a (poorly written) essay using invalid logic to make unsound arguments, all the while using technical and scientific terms inappropriately and without justification in an attempt to apply a veneer of rigour and profundity over their steaming pile of banal observations and utter nonsense.

This talk is a criticism of that tendency in the art world.

Tiff Talk Teaser

I mentioned my SoOnCon talk in several earlier posts.

I’m currently in the process of editing the footage from the actual talk. The full presentation was 28:50, just shy of the 30 minute allotment we were given. My goal is to remove the dead space and redundancies without taking away from the actual content or tone of the presentation. I want to deliver the complete talk, while taking up as little of your time as possible.

Here is a little teaser to hopefully whet your appetite: