Exhibition: Sandpaper Tongue
Caleb Considine Sandpaper Tongue May 13 - June 17 2018
The title of the painting "Shad Crossing" is taken from the title of the fish mosaic in that train station, made by Ming Fay in 2004. I don't know whether he was intending the fish to symbolize the commuting public, but the strong tendency to anthropomorphize makes it unavoidable, for me at least. I think it's pretty and like thinking of New Yorkers as fish swimming along going about their day, and there is a kind of current to the way people move here. But what about the people in the subway who are not commuting, but just trying to stay warm or find a place to rest? They are tolerated in that station only if they stay on those benches, specifically designed to add to their discomfort. Working down there, staring at the fish and the bench, I thought of these lines from TJ Clark: "As for the public, we could make an analogy with Freudian theory. The unconscious is nothing but its conscious representations, its closure in the faults, silences and caesuras of normal discourse. . . . The public, like the unconscious, is present only where it ceases; yet it determines the structure of private discourse, it is the key to what cannot be said, and no subject is more important." My painting, of course, replicates the defining absence in this image of the public as only swiftly moving fellow travelers. TJ Clark thought an image of the people came through in rare cases, but that these were the exceptions, "and that art in the nineteenth century showed everything of modern life except those who lived it." I don't think of myself as a 19th century style artist really (even if I know I am in some ways), but there are clear echoes between the counter-revolution of the 1850's and following political ice age that was Clark's benchmark and our own time. In any case, for this show I wanted to focus my realist figurative energy on the enemy of the people: Don't worship the devil is made from a high end doll, and my hope was that in spite of the appearance of a person there could be a lurking suspicion that you were looking at a non-human thing, which is more or less how I think of the police. –Caleb Considine, May 2018
Caleb Considine (b. 1982 Los Angeles, lives and works in New York), received his BFA from Yale University and his MFA in 2008 from Columbia University. Selected solo exhibitions include Cancelled, Galerie Buchholz, Berlin, 2017; Massimo de Carlo, London, 2016; Bureau, New York, 2015; Essex Street, New York, 2013; and Federico Vavasorri, Milan, 2012. Considine was included in the Kyiv Biennale, Ukraine, 2015; and Greater New York, MoMA PS1, New York, 2010. Group exhibitions include Bad Conscience, organized by John Miller, Metro Pictures, New York, 2014; Freak Out, Greene Naftali, New York, 2013. His work is in the collections of the Aïshti Foundation, Beirut, Lebanon, and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
The Vet, 2018, oil on canvas, 15 x 5 inches
Peel, 2018, oil on canvas, 8 x 20 inches
Untitled, 2018, oil on canvas, 14 x 11 inches
Milk Crate, 2018, oil on canvas, 13 x 15 inches
Don't Worship the Devil, 2018, oil on canvas, 10 x 13 inches
Shad Crossing, 2018, oil on canvas, 11 x 14 inches
Photography by Dario Lasagni.