Manufuturing March 4 – April 23, 2016
Reflecting on the contemporary art trend of “Zombie Formalism”, we highlight work that rebels against such reductivist practices and instead embraces abstraction in its purist form, with gusto. While art critics have described this “cerebral” painting style of monochromatic fields or process-fetish abstraction as repetitive and generic, in the hands of Creative Growth artists the act of painting becomes expressive once more in our exhibition, Manufuturing. Lifted from a drawing by Creative Growth artist Ed Walters, the title is both a symbolic abstraction of a contrived alphabet stencil and a witty mash-up that in more subtle terms provokes the question: what is the alternative to art’s manufactured future?
For the artists at Creative Growth, the answer is being part of an inspired macrocosm that enables each work to be a singular representation of the artist who imagined it. Rather than reference art movements, artist Jane Kassner effaces them with her painterly collages of Art Forum ads. The experimental aesthetic of Miguel Palacios’ layered paintings echo no one but his own name—the letters “MGANEL” are sprinkled throughout—and the esoteric script of Donald Mitchell is as non-derivative as the artist himself. This body of work is not manufactured or self-conscious; instead it shows an optimistic future for art making, untainted by the influence of the art market, its collectors, or the pressure to produce mechanical imitations of a recycled vocabulary.
Also on view are works from the “Mixed Media Action Painting” Visiting Artist Workshop, led by artist Greg Crawford. In this workshop, artists were introduced to the concept of action painting, where the physicality of working on large media while standing enabled bold, physical mark-making and serendipitous discoveries in painterly expression.
During our Members’ Preview, join Director Tom di Maria for a conversation about the newly launched The Creative Growth Book celebrating the first 40 years of the center. Tom and several of the book’s contributors will discuss the evolution of the book’s design, writing, and the road to publication.
Exhibition Opening: FRIDAY, MARCH 4 MEMBERS’ PREVIEW: 11AM - 2PM MAIN EVENT: 5PM - 9PM SOUND BY KAORI SUZUKI & PETER WOODS BAR + SNACKS