Seth Edenbaum – Recent Paintings (Works)

Selected Works

Seth Edenbaum

Recent Paintings
March 27 – May 3, 1997

Seth Edenbaum – Recent Paintings Press Release

Thomas Erben is very pleased to present SETH EDENBAUM’S first solo exhibition of recent paintings and drawings.

“I like paintings I can stare at, that I can sit in front of and look at for hours; paintings that allow me to dream, to enjoy fantasy without merely indulging in it. The works I admire in any medium take ideas from the world and impose other ideas on it, without doing either in a way that is necessarily violent or disrespectful (though it may at times be both.)

“Velazquez and Titian as much as Picasso or Matisse made abstractions out of the external world. Polke, Warhol, and Lichtenstein used or appropriated images of that world, but they all returned their works to it as representations. In this century, the only works of fantasy I love are Klee’s, because they seem so modern and so real. With some exceptions, I am not as much interested in escaping the world as I am in enjoying the patterns we make of it.

“My paintings are very personal but are made for an audience of others, as others, long dead, made their paintings for us. They are not pure any more than they are ‘modernist’; and they are not ‘conceptual’, though they may be intellectual. I like to think that they are also very funny.”

Your Gold Teeth II (reproduced on the exhibition poster)

Titled from a song of the same name, the canvas owes something to Lichtenstein’s mirror paintings including areas of mechanical brushwork (also reminiscent of Richter) and the oval form of the central image. Other areas are painted with violently expressionistic brushwork mediated by coolness of tone. Among other things, it is possible to recognize in it something approximating a face.

Go Fly a Kite… et al.

A flip copy of a Markus Luepertz painting: Floating Dithyramb, transposed to an abstract version of a beach scene! Primed in an acrylic McDonald’s orange, Germanic heaviness is transformed into a California landscape. With brushwork both casual and precise, the painting is an homage neither entirely ironic nor entirely serious.

Geli Tripping (for Setsuko Hara)

A mixture of real and painterly space, images and textures, the painting is torn by contradictory sensibilities. Areas of a cool aqua blue being overcome by a flow of deep red are balanced by seemingly arbitrary formal devices. Geli Tripping: the doomed hipster in a classic American novel of the ’70s meets Setsuko Hara, real life actress, ‘good daughter’ of postwar Japanese film.

…and other works.

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