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tom moody

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Nebula Rorschach Framed

I've been doing some housekeeping around the site(s). I added an explanatory paragraph to my main site page [that para has since been moved here], largely as a reminder to curators who say things like "your blog is your art" that I'm an exhibiting artist, although it's been a long time between shows (I had a 2-person in 2002 but my last solo was '99). These gaps aren't unusual. I'm always working, but sometimes it takes a while for a body of work to congeal--by that I mean into a critically tight show. I had a five year gap between my last Texas solo and my first New York solo, and it took that long to get oriented in a new environment and not go off half-cocked. I recently discovered that Ken Johnson's New York Times review of my 1998 show (David Clarkson and I each had a room) is online in the Times archive--evidently five-paragraph articles don't require the usual obnoxious fee to view. I need to post installation shots of that show, but this picture is representative. In the comments someone asked if I'm still working large, and the answer is not that large. That show was, I would say, critically successful and led to a spate of exhibitions in the late '90s and early '00s but the work isn't collector friendly because it's huge, aggressive and made of photocopy paper (precisely the things that make it appealing to critics). I've put a lot of thought and effort into resolving this contradiction and the solution is more modest work but also more complex work, formally and thematically. I'm moving ahead with framing (see above) which is indispensable to give the current pieces a sense of solidity and presence. I think I'm giving up on the installations I was doing a couple of years back because realistically they're backbreaking (hours of standing in one position sticking pins in the wall) and I don't want the art to be about stamina. I'm kind of sick of the art world expectation that everything important has to be a physical tour de force (how much space can you fill up with some obsessive time consuming activity a la Sarah Sze, or the woman at LFL who packed the gallery with painted scrap wood). As Jon Stewart says, "I'm not going to be your monkey" even if it means perceived second-tier status. (Also assuring a lifetime of backbenching is my lack of interest in working on canvas anymore; everything I do now is on paper, which in the medieval mind of the art market means "lesser art.")

- tom moody 10-24-2004 10:14 pm [link] [1 comment]