correcting and adding to the record on : STEVEN PARRINO

Steve always had a neat studio. There was never a big storage closet full of older works. Although we were friends I never really caught him at work putting together those big scale piss elegant abstractions. I do know studio mates of his however who did spend time with him working who mentioned that he had a habit of either destroying, reusing (refucking-up) or painting over unsold pieces. Some of those canvas wads were old (often exceedingly successful ) stretcher pieces. Pieces in one show would be repainted, usually trending to black for the next show. I think he took a que and ran with it, as this is something (best friend and biker buddy) Olivier Mosset does too: repainting old pieces for new shows. This would suggest that there is precious little work(for someone with 37 solo shows) outside of the sold pieces. I'm hearing that Steve didn't keep much of a record of this process. That may make for something of a challenge in assembling his catalog raisonn'e. With any luck written and photographic gallery and museum records of works destroyed, transmuted and physically same (painted-repainted) paintings with different names, identities and meanings will form a convolutedly accurate history. I would hope that this important aspect is explored in Parrino's upcoming major survey show currently being planned by Geneva's Musee d'Art Moderne et Contemporain for October 2005.

note: Parrino's destruction of unsold paintings has a wholly different meaning from the destructive editing activities of precedential modernist's like de Kooning and Baldassari. This may have been fully obvious but is just dawning on me now, posthumously.

-Bill Schwarz
- bill 1-06-2005 7:05 pm

corrections :

1) the ny post stated that steve was riding a "Red" motorcycle and the A.P. seems to have picked up that erroneous information which has been republished all over the place. It was a "Black" Harley Davidson motorcycle.

2) Roberta Smith's obit for the NYT states that steve was a neo-geo artist :

Mr. Parrino first showed his paintings at Nature Morte, an East Village gallery, in 1984, emerging as part of a strain of postmodernism called Neo-Geo. Neo-Geo artists, who included Peter Halley, Wallace & Donahue, Haim Steinbach, John Armleder and Olivier Mosset, mixed modernist abstraction with a more cynical form of Pop Art worldliness by adding references to commerce, design, music or the movies.
A) Steve was never critically included in the Neo-Geo group and he never professed to be one. B) I differ with many of Ms. Smiths examples of other artists considered by her to be Neo-Geoists. your welcome to extend the dialog into a better definition of Neo-Geo. My recollection was that it was that the term was specific to the paintings of Halley, Taffe and a few other painters employing codified geometry in thir work. Tom moody made this comment off line to a similar statement of mine :
Robert Atkins' Artspeak defines neo-Geo as "neo-geometric conceptualism" and thinks it consists of Halley, Koons, Vaisman, and Bickerton because they famously showed together at Sonnabend in Oct. 86. It also says the "movement" fell out of favor when the same artists were poorly received in Europe after a show at Saatchi's gallery in '87. McCormick isn't mentioned or credited re: the term. Armleder and Steinbach are also mentioned as being related to the "movement."

- bill 1-06-2005 7:10 pm [add a comment]

i just notice the following essay noted in steve's bio: MOSSET, Olivier. "STAR TREK, Neo-Geo: The Next Generation." Bomb Magazine Fall 1989: XXIX. / will have to check into what olivier was saying and report back
- bill 1-08-2005 12:44 am [add a comment]

"McCormick" above refers to Carlo.
- tom moody 1-12-2005 12:01 am [add a comment]

i had mentioned Carlo's (McCormick, Carlo. "Popometry." Artforum (November 1985) repro: Big Iris) article off line.

- bill 1-12-2005 6:20 am [add a comment]

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