Cy Amundson

CY AMUNDSON
Some Things I Thought of That You Didn’t
September 13 – October 27, 2007

Some Things I thought of That You Didn’t featuring the new work by Cy Amundson will be on view from 13 September through 27 October 2007. Opening reception will be held Thursday 13 September from 6-8p.

Also on view from the collection of Charlotte and Bill Ford is Martin Kippenberger’s Wenn Sie mit der Freiheit nicht klarkommen, versuchen Sie es doch mal mit Frauen (part 1) (If You Cannot Deal with Freedom, Why Not Try it with Women[part 1])

A brief interview with the artist:

What is the point of the portrait in this work? You create portraits or “heads” that lack an engagement with the viewer. They are closed off and there is no obvious gaze to trap the viewer. The sculpture even more so, in that the mirrored surfaces look inwards, silently, reflecting upon themselves. Does a portrait need a gaze that connects to the outside world to be a portrait?

CA: In both the sculpture and the painting, the subject of the work is its medium more than anything else. I find the portrait to be a very versatile format for making paintings about painting. Likewise the sculptures are really very self-referential. Sculpture is necessarily extroverted in a way, it takes up space. The flat and 3D works in this case have their roles reversed; the paintings being extroverted and the sculptures introverted.

Why are the 3D “figure” sculptures that stand on the floor, mute and elegant, while the painted characters on the wall are so loud and cacophonous?

CA: The main reason the paintings are not mute and elegant is that I find mute and elegant paintings boring. Sculpture is necessarily extroverted in a way. It takes up space. The flat and 3D works in this case have their roles reversed; the paintings being extroverted and the sculptures introverted.

Are your deliberate acknowledgments of painterly influences such as Picabia, Picasso, Henning, Condo, Magritte and Malevich among others, a means of commenting on your own place in the collective pool of art history. Are you placing yourself as the latest talent at the end of an esteemed lineage, securing your place, or is this just more irony?

CA: No, I just like them. I suppose most people would like to, and maybe even should, think that they are the latest talent at the end of an esteemed lineage. And as far as irony goes, I wouldn’t rip off things that I like if I were trying to say the opposite. Well, I guess I do have to own up to some playfulness here. If I am being ironic, it is by making pictures that are akin to avant-garde images in a time when the avant-garde is a sort of logical impossibility.

The dominant presence in the painted images is of a female portrait, with iconography of breasts and long hair.