January 8, 2013

Check out Do Easy Art's, Yanyan Huang, brilliant piece on Bea Fremderman's c,o,n,t,i,n,u,o,u,s & c-o-n-n-e-c-t-e-d.

At Bea Fremderman’s c,o,n,t,i,n,u,o,u,s & c-o-n-n-e-c-t-e-d, so completely does the atmosphere of a dismal office envelope the viewer that after a few moments, one begins to feel the iron fist of time cards and youth slipping away minute by minute. Even worse, bureaucracy - inter-office politics - asbestos paranoia - pervading sense of existential entrapment - these ideas rise like a bad dream. 

A single metal industrial chair leg extends out from the wall, casting 3 different shadows, a sort of string theory tromp l’oeil. One can’t help but wonder about parallel universes, as in “Are there alternate realities where I might not see office furniture and break out in a cold sweat?” or, “Maybe there’s someplace where my time and youth isn’t exchanged for comically low compensation.” It also operates as a post-apocalyptic sundial, though in this universe, the sun never moves and time never progresses. 

Hung in the corner as if to simulate an actual window, a post-modern bas-relief of a plastic blind is rendered useless by the ceiling tile cutting across nearly half the canvas. One can’t help but look for escape in this piece - the shutters conjure up a blue sky and open fields outside, or at least a somewhat interesting metropolitan landscape - when really, there’s just drywall. It is a dead end and there is no escape. Such thoughts pervade the brains of anyone who has ever worked in an office for any period of their lives. 

Reminiscent of Milano Mephis design, the untitled angular ceiling tile wall piece could be mistaken for a clock. Complete with a mini lint roller posing as a clock hand, it’s forever stuck to its occupation of lint-removal: perfectly delightful and perfectly horrifying. Like the black paper clips glued onto the tile, when one is stuck in the doldrums of an office job, minutes - even seconds - can feel like eternity.  

Chromehenge, a glossy square print featuring squiggly mercurial droplets in a semicircle against a graph backdrop, thumbs its nose at the provenance and legacy of older cultures, an essentially American gesture. Smugness and pride at its own ignorance, that’s what Americans be proud about. “Yes, you’ve got your mysterious Stonehenge and centuries of history, but we’ve got good old-fashioned American enthusiasm! What’s history compared to progress-at-any-cost and maximized efficiency?” This is the legacy we’re leaving: banality and the death of spontaneity.       

Perfect, polite, charming: Fremderman’s seemingly innocuous pieces actually function as desperate pleas to overthrow, or at least not engage in, the absurdity that is a 40-hour confinement to one desk within one office within one building for 40 odd years of one’s life. c,o,n,t,i,n,u,o,u,s provides new methods of viewing depraved Capitalistic existence while providing suggestions for escape: fantasy, becoming an artist, transforming and selling subverted minutiae of everyday horror. A formidable vein of Capitalism in its own right.

Bea Fremderman, c,o,n,t,i,n,u,o,u,s & c-o-n-n-e-c-t-e-d 

December 1 - January 12, 2013

Aran Cravey Gallery  |  1638 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice Beach