Slow is going back to school. Sort of.
There is an office on Washington College campus, a small liberal arts college in a part of our nation known as the Eastern Shore, that has become an alternative exhibition space. Directed by Benjamin Zellmer Bellas. We conjured the logic of reverse Polish notation (sorry for the math geek reference) with our representation agreement. Benjamin’s space, Daly 208 projects, is featuring Slow. Sort of.
A new venue presented the opportunity for a show; I jumped at the chance to include Jeffrey’s work. Jeffrey pairs perfectly with Judith. We own our slippage, our contradictions. We are gleefully representing Jeffrey’s and Judith’s work in a show that is ambiguously Slow. The gallery director’s 6 year old son, Archer, will be offering juice boxes to the eager minds who attend the opening reception.
Post Orientation is **cking awesome.
Judith Brotman and Jeffrey Grauel
October 25-November 15, 2013
You are in college now. Far enough in that you have been called upon to think, to synthesize, to perform. Early enough in a semester that you are waiting, perhaps, to be moved, to find yourself changed by the mythical college experience.
Judith Brotman and Jeffrey Grauel are brought together in this gallery on this campus to address some of the mythic changes. You had your summer. Perhaps the best summer of your life. Rife with awareness of freedom, how fleeting and fickle that freedom can be. Pregnant with anticipation. Get it while you can, while you’re young. Judith recounts her blissful (and angst driven) dreams of summer. This is your time, your opportunity to live your own rules and escape the shackles of too many parents and too many principals (principles). Jeffrey looks at the world through beer-hazed filters.
Summer has transitioned to fall, and with the leaves, comfortable truths flutter to the ground. Cover the solid ground and hide the boundaries that used to seem so clear. But we’re in college now. We’re here to embrace challenging truths. Explore meaning. Judith is offering a golden opportunity. Accept her word, and you are empowered to generate meaning on your own terms. Jeffrey is offering a twisted truth—a conceptual drawing. It is charcoal on paper, as simple to grasp as anything can be. Jeffrey has created a platform. Use it to its full soapbox potential. Of course, grasp in this case has turned every intention on its head—he’s speaking about the use of that opposable thumb, the mundanity of a spoon or pencil, and not grasping concepts as we expect to do in the grand lecture hall. Judith and Jeffrey are instigating a primal rebellion against the knowledge you came here to seek. They offer knowing too, but the conventions of their sorts of meaning are mostly avoided inside these (college) walls.
Finally there is the projection to the next space. That change you are all waiting to recognize—where will my education lead me, and what kind of life is it preparing me to lead? Judith and Jeffrey are painting landscapes. Judith’s field is fecund with the wild things. Not scary, but certainly undomesticated. Jeffrey’s is not exactly mountainous, but acknowledges the coming climb. Bouldering. If you sit in these regions you may uncover the thing each artist uncovered in the makings: that the next place, the led life, the new vision is found in the dumb mundane places you find yourselves already. The move is interior, subtle, and loud all at the same time. This place looks like a joke of an environment- the place you have to be before you are in the place where you want to get to, the destiny, a graduation into something real. But here we are, in our bodies, our changed bodies, with our walk, changed walk through this place, changed place. Changed because we’ve tromped through the fallen leaves that blurred the comforting boundaries. Here we are new people leading new lives in new places. Looking at the dumb and fake seaming place is the only place we are, so it is the only place to look and so is the only place where we can see—it is a pretty big set of changes and some of the larger lessons learned.