FABRIC OF PARADISE
Paradise is not for the living, and it may not even be for the dead. So, we make art to subjugate the fear that what we know is all we will ever have. In this spirit, Fabric of Paradise explores some of the ways we contort reality to extract meaning and escape death, featuring pieces thoughtfully curated from a couple of the artist’s most prominent series, as well as brand new standalone works.
The largest pieces, which contain antiquated busts set against futuristic circumstances, are part of the artist’s Next Level series. They narrate the journey of an everyman protagonist from depravity to new-found love to dissolution, set against the context of ‘advancing to the next level’ in an arcade game. The assumption is that with the completion of each level, one comes closer to victory, but the reality is that the player is actually just advancing toward death. The mixture of old and new imagery represents shared romantic experience across the ages: the times are dissimilar, but the feelings are not.
Fabric of Paradise borrows its title from another collection, Paradise for the Living, one of the artist’s most recent series of conceptually related works. Focused on flora, fauna and viscera, the pieces indulge - and simultaneously challenge - the viewer’s sense of comfort. A few of the works contain machinery or other trappings of industry and suggest an ambivalence toward technology and its effects on human beings. And all of the pieces ask the viewer to consider this question: How can you be wholly a part of nature while also being wholly apart from it?
All of the works in Fabric of Paradise have been chosen to remind the viewer that there is power in love and power in death. Paradise is a glittering generality, which is why human beings have evoked its name in verdant locales near and far, intimations of heaven, and bad pop songs. We make our own paradise on the inside, and we share the bits we can loose from our minds as we fumble into connections on our way to the grave.