Friday, May 20, 2011

a discourse on childhood.


i was once asked what i thought to be 'taboo' by an artist doing research & while i find that many strange things often attract me, i thought anything that mars the innocence of a child is taboo. childhood is such a magically potent place, a realm in which all things are possible; invincibility, magic, & the prospect of true happiness. capturing this in a painting is quite difficult . . .

artist jana brike offers up a new body of work, 'the book of taboo' at distinction gallery. i'll admit, i've felt iffy about this artist for awhile, but i feel warmed by her new work. yes, some of it nearly crosses the line for me, as if to poke a (feminine) stick at the young milk skinned nudes male artists conjure in the "scene", but still there seems to be a vibrant potency in this challenge of "taboo". the artist explains that the portraits are an image of  "the "child" archetype, which represents a human state with the analytic mind in a slumber condition & with [a] wide-awake hyperactive id." i think the work is challenging & stunning in what it uncovers about childhood & by nature, adulthood. it stands on the tenuous fault line, at once hypnotic with it's beauty, colors & settings & at the same, quite viscerally provocative. 

for further reading, take at this post by the artist about her new show.