ART Habens Art Review // Special Issue ART Habens Art Review - Special Issue #89 - Page 22

ART Habens Jack Rosenberg aspects of being an artist in the 21st century with many contemporaries; but like faces, we’re all a bit different. That difference is celebrated and expressed in the highly individualistic artworks that the current generation of contemporary artists seems intent on creating. The creative process can be divorced from direct experience: think of the first human sculptures of gods and deities. Certainly, since there were no actual gods to model, those artworks were born in the imagination, although they were certainly inspired by “real” attributes and forms. The creative process takes up a substantial portion of imagination. Having said that, I think most artists are the sum of their parts and their being absolutely affects their creative processes. In one sense, it’s quite straightforward: I paint and then I exhibit the work. Of course, deep in my mind as I am working I do understand that the audience will be a key component of the experience of the exhibition. That said, I do not alter my process or artistic choices based on what I may imagine how some viewers would respond. I stay as independent as I can in the studio. Naturally, I would love for everyone to respond and be interested and enthusiastic about each and every artwork. It doesn’t work that way though: each viewer brings their own set of criteria and expectations and tastes. I couldn’t possibly anticipate what they might all be and wouldn’t want to try. By blurring the boundaries, literally, of the images, I create an ambiguity that allows room for projection and interpretation. Some paintings are more receptive to this openness than others. It’s all a byproduct of the dialogue that goes on in my mind during the actual painting process. Each series or body of works is an individual statement or point of view. Somewhere in my group of recent paintings is the seed that will grow and multiply to generate the imagery of my next series. My work is obviously representational, and often familiar. It’s then processed and “disambiguated” so as to create a different conversation. The amount or density of abstraction is directly proportional to the goal of retaining an edge of familiarity. It’s a narrow edge that I try to balance upon. When I am successful, the image is mostly accessible—yet significantly altered and transformed—and the final artwork yields interesting, even pleasing results. Special Issue Where it goes from here, I’m as curious as you to find out… An interview by and 23 4 05 , curator curator