"In regular usage, the word grafﬁti describes an urban decay-threat, akin to mold, understood as pathology. It may be pathological, but not because
it's vandalism, rather because it dreams of total saturation through an open-ended sequence of events, each a slight variation on the last." *
From the self-affirmative gesture of graffiti to the therapeutic painting session, the three current works revolve around the idea of art making for personal development. Largely inspired by Carl Jung's theories, the movement of art therapy has popularized the idea that the act of painting and drawing can be the foundation of a psychotherapy process. Using the romantic idea of art as a catalyst for emotions, it carries promises of self-awareness toward a change for the better. Following the fuzzy contours of the therapeutic notion of development, the present pieces find themselves in an paradoxical state of mind. In order of advance:
Rehabilited Scribbles series / completed stage
Washed inkjet prints mounted on tiles
Appropriated from graffiti writers, tags are fixed with clear spray onto an image of a screensaver-like butterfly. Later, the inkjet print has been washed to reveal the invisible inscription. The piece recreates in its process the double condition of graffiti in the street: even when visible, it remains unseen and unread. Its form as a coded genre produces a generic quality in which only few can decipher. In trying to address a form of personal expression, grafitti instead stays run-of-the mill. Furthermore, its existence is jeopardized by the possibility of future erasure by cleaning or strikeouts by other tags. In the exhibition, the "dirty" graffiti has been washed for its own good.
Curated Analysis Playlist / blocked stage
Shuffled videos projected from a washing machine
Gathering video material from both art therapists and clients ranging from advertising trailers to video diaries, "Curated Analysis Playlist" re-presents images of artworks produced through therapy sessions. As surrogates for the self, the only aim of these artworks are to transfer and express the inner feelings of their various authors. These images, contingent on this specific use and yet anonymous, circulate as samples promoting various streams of art therapy. Projected from the inside of a washing machine used as an extra lens, the distortion thereby produced emphazises the mood of the pictures. Playlisted on youtube and set on looped shuffle mode, they are programmed to combine and repeat in short fragments.
Learning from Development / ongoing stage
C-print test strips and wakame sea weed in art transport tube filled with
Books covers sourced from academic publications dedicated to art therapy professionnals have been photographed then developed in a darkroom. An additional disortion in the image has been created by using the washing machine glass portal from the previous piece. What remains are sample strips from a trial for a potential new work. Operating visually between a test tube and a darkroom washing bath, the piece shows an indeterminate state of production.
*Seth Price,"Was ist Los" (2003/2005)