Go For Baroque
Jason Dunda & Erin Washington
SPRING/BREAK Art Show, New York
March 4-9 2020
If it ain't Baroque don't fix it: a curatorial statement
Baroque as a celebration of a highly ordered spinning clockwork universe is echoed in the utopian forms and imagery of Erin Washington. While in the 17th century, art would have led to unknowable divine design, Washington celebrates the failure of that journey. At the same moment, Jason Dunda seduces the viewer with indulgent virtuoso painting combining figurative abstraction and polite dissent to expose corruption and chicanery posing as piety.
The two artists come together to transform a space into one of tangential thinking, humor, and improvisation. In addition to selections from their individual studio practices, Dunda and Washington will present collaborative works that draw connections between disparate images and materials from the history of art, design, and popular culture. The audience will likely recognize references to Star Trek, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Buckminster Fuller, and other cultural iconography.
The result is a web of images, objects, and environments whose relations are evident but whose underlying meaning is opaque. The viewer is surrounded by an intricate shrine of symbols and ornament. From large sculptural heads to figurines and postcards, the artists create a universe that intrigues at both epic and minute scales.
For their installation, this duo will continue to bring the atavistic human element of pattern finding and let it run through the room. Each visual object and node becomes a cartouche. Painter’s tape equivocates as ribbons and ornate counter curves. The excess of white marble and gold supplanted by pink foam and cardboard. These materials are not chosen for their ubiquity or ironic jest. These materials are costly not in the moment to the consumer but in the duration for the planet. The convenience of their use symbolizes the wealth of our society. As Rococo chose extravagant elements to cement itself as an age of glorious luxury, Dunda and Washington showcase these interstitial materials to highlight the excess of our opulent Western moment.
- KT Duffy and Ali Seradge