Overduin and Co

Cheyney Thompson

07 Nov - 18 Dec 2010

© Cheyney Thompson

Papua New Guinea

November 7th - December 18th, 2010
Opening reception: Sunday, November 7th, 6-8 pm

Overduin and Kite is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings and sculptures by New York-based artist Cheyney Thompson entitled “Memphis, Pedestals, Chronochromes, Subincision, Papua New Guinea, /Macaire/, Motifs.”
This is Thompson’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles.

For Munsell, color is named according to three numerically codified descriptive categories -Hue, Saturation, and Value. The result is a complete and asymmetrical color space. In these paintings, the color system is grafted onto a calendar. Each day has a complementary hue pair, each hour changes the colors' value, and each month the saturation changes. Noon is absolute white and midnight is absolute black. This provides a system of producing paintings, which would register fatigue, distraction, and interruptions as, in theory, it has the potential to produce a smooth gradient that would represent a continuous flow of time. The gradients, however, are not consistent due to the inability to work at all times every day. The system's description may or may not aid in an interpretation of the work. The paintings all share the same height, every width is numerically unique. This organization of formats displaces the function of the frame as the primary determining feature of a picture's ability to signify within genre forms.
Even while certain formats may resemble a historic genre for painting (landscape, portrait), they are constituted by a fundamentally arbitrary cut into an industrial loom's more or less infinite capacity for production. Typically, this inaugural cut allows for an initial suppression of the types of laboring bodies, which produced the linen. This procedure will continue for one year.

To think through problems that organize themselves around the terms of painting, it would be impossible to not address the vertical, phallic, modes of signification that condition painting's legibility (histories of names, its vertical address on the wall, even the very conjunction Painter/Painting seems to indicate a filiation which only resolves itself in so many symbolic deaths). The pedestals are a support for the framing or presentation of the supplemental materials that go into the imaging-work's always potential foreclosure of research. While traversing the signifier /painting/ one comes across a potentially elaborate set of possible signifieds--color, identities, collections, supports, types of production, discourses...These pedestals are presenting information which as information can only have a tertiary relationship to the presentation of painting. But with the pedestals, the information can find its own mode of address by being bound to the singular instance of that which presents (the non-repeating formal iteration of the pedestals). The logic of the varied forms of the pedestals is simple. The surface area of a typical pedestal for presenting a document is 3200 square inches. This number is treated as a topological constant in the design of these five pedestals that all share the same surface area.

/Robert Macaire/:
The power of this name does not come from its efficacy to symbolize villainy or greed -- even if at one point it did exactly that. It is a magical name with the ability to deracinate identities that have become naturalized in their reified iterations through technological forms of reproduction and legalistic accounts of subjects. Robert Macaire shows all subjects to be shot through with historically determined forces, which exceed the subject’s capacity for self-representation or narrativization. In so far as this name is separated from its own rootedness in localized moralization, it can function as a name, which unnames, or the signature, which de-authorizes any act, which claims as natural right the validity and meaningfulness of selfpresence. Robert Macaire-l'Ethnographe.

Papua New Guinea:
This is the site of the famous early study of gender construction by Ian Hogbin entitled "The Island of Menstruating Men". He details the practice of subincision, the lateral cutting of the penis, which results in a violent transposition of the vagina to the penis. This seems to be another way of thinking the interpenetration of the law and the body through mimesis. This could lead to a different conception of Erotic Art. Here, PNG is an invaginating foil against the will to the generic demonstrated elsewhere.
There are 820 languages spoken in PNG making it the most linguistically diverse country in the world. In 2006, it was designated by the UN as the least-developed country. A specimen of tribal shell currency is on display in the gallery.

Motifs: In this exhibition-a gift from a landlord, top view of the Munsell color solid, Bezier's flower, the letter M, a grid turned on its bias.

Tags: Cheyney Thompson