David Ostrowski’s new physique of work depict a single topic: a garments hanger. The hanger is repeated in every portray, positioned close to the highest of the composition, such that the hook curls up and excessive fringe of the portray, as if the hanger is held on that edge. This phantasm of a closet bar turns into a damaged line, linking all of the work alongside an ironic, inside horizon. Every hanger is empty; no garments, no style, no figures. However by negation, what’s lacking feels overwhelmingly current.
Sprayed paint, outlines, backgrounds, foregrounds, pasted paper, drips, drabs, flecks, rub-outs, cut-outs, patches and bleeding edges pimp an unclean charisma to a befuddled monochrome. Every hanger is painted in another way. Traces, hints, and residues stack up into units of microdecisions that refuse to be recognized. The rhythym of a line, fading out each few centimeters, suggests the capability of the comb, working out of paint, reloaded time and again alongside the journey, evaporating right into a nice vapor of erotic restraint. The integrity of the painted floor slips away. Lots of the hangers, at first look, seem painted on high, however are the truth is below the background colour, painted to a hair’s breath of the sting. Some work, completed and photographed for the accompanying catalog, have been then faraway from the stretcher, with sections minimize out, glued on, or painted over: cosmetic surgery on the undead.
Every hanger conjures softly spoken however bizarrely deconstructed familiarities with the historic canon of portray, a smoke sign recognition hinging on the slightest of particulars. The entice is ready for skepticism, however the punishment is simply extra pleasant gestures. A false flag artwork historical past take a look at, this verisimilitude stays a pump pretend, by no means inflicting sufficient contact to wish a referee. These unusual acquainted notes stay as scrumptious phantoms.
In an essay titled, “Quite a few Sides of Nothing,” whereas describing his personal course of for writing about Ostrowski’s work, Jörg Heiser described needing to put apart the “turgid outpouring on nothingness and the void within the philosophies of Alain Badiou, Jacques Derrida, and Jacques Lacan,” as a result of Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, “appeared extra useful.”
Together with the writers of Seinfeld, Heiser mentions one other satirist, who additionally occurs to be Ostrowski’s grandmother, the Polish-Jewish author Krystyna Żywulska. In 1946 she wrote I Survived Auschwitz about her expertise within the camp, adopted by Empty Water in 1963, about her time within the Warsaw Ghetto.
Empty closets. Absent figures.
What else are these work not? Throughout the identical summer season I visited Ostrowski’s studio, the information from again dwelling was saturated with footage of protestors holding up wire hangers, marching in opposition towards the Supreme Court docket ruling on abortion rights. The formal bodily reductions unlock stadiums of silence, however with the addition of a motif, the works behave as a type of visible reverb, a quantum portray, during which the reflections of a persistent, collective, painterly information are constructed up, accumulating right into a sensation of dimensional time. There isn’t a linear historical past embodied in these works. Empty area, identical to time, is an phantasm created by the artist. Ostrowski defies his personal dedication to the non-motif with this utterly new physique of work that includes precisely that. It’s typically stated that artwork creates area. Ostrowski’s new work create area/time.
Maybe his signature vacancy was by no means a negation or a discount, however fairly an enlargement.
at Ramiken, New Yorok
till February 25, 2023
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