Notes on burlap works
This collection of assorted works from 2004-06 represent a period of frequent travel in South and Southeast Asia and a residency in Spain. I visited these places as a journalist and an artist, meeting local artists and writing about their work as well as making my own. (see attached articles)
The mousey grey color of the burlap was a mainstay. It represented the tones and textures of the topography I was traversing, waterlogged wooden architecture dried in the sun, or boats, or dead vegetation, or Buddhist figuration and shrines. This general haptic greyness, that nonetheless reflected light and was very rich and subtle, shot through with the occasional absorbent hue, seemed to fill my general vision when in these places most of the time.
But the other aspect of the burlap was the beginning of my attempt to thwart the truisms surrounding painting. It seemed to me that the way I was utilizing the material, it was a fait accompli, finished as soon as I assembled the painting. The material provided the content, circumventing the presence of the artist almost entirely. It opened up a quasi-anonymous site that nonetheless had familiars in common with conventional attitudes toward painting.
- Joe Fyfe
JOE FYFE(born in 1952, New York, New York)
Joe Fyfe is based in New York City. He repurposes found materials like kites, signs, and banners to reveal the poetic beauty within overlooked everyday objects. Culled from daily refuse—particularly that of impoverished areas in Southeast Asia—Fyfe’s work documents regional transitions and globalization. They are deliberately nonrepresentational, allowing materials to dictate form and come together on their own, rather than adhere to a preconceived artist’s vision. Fyfe received his BFA in 1976 from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His work has been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions in locations such as Galerie Christian Lethert in Cologne, Germany; Ryllega Gallery in Hanoi, Vietnam; Galerie Bernard Ceysson in Geneva, Switzerland and White Columns in New York City.