FORM LESS PAINTING
Karin Schneider in collaboration with Heidi Ballet, Charles Broskoski, Egan Frantz, Dena Yago, and Damon Zucconi


September 9 - October 7, 2011


To construct a painting.

A painting is a meeting point between centuries of history and contemporary culture. The categories developed to think about painting are so vast that for it to be a unique work of art it has to negotiate a point in this network of histories and meanings. Painting has to carry the weight of history on its shoulders. For an artist in the 21st century, turning to painting as an art form is as political an act as making immaterial art is.

A short while ago, when I was putting out the garbage, I found a discarded painting. It was square, approximately 40 × 40 cm, and was cracked and folded in half. Unfolded, it was vivid red and black, painted with rough brush strokes in high contrast. It depicted a scene of betrayal between a couple and another woman. On the backside, written in clear black capital letters, it read: “Daring to make mistakes.” As a discarded memento, this painting took on greater meaning than it was intended to have.

Is it possible to separate the physical painting from the idea of painting  — outside a canon? While many artists in the past 50 years have altered the notion of art, its materiality and appearance, can the opposite happen? Can painting be thought of as an experimental platform not inscribed within tradition?

In 2009, as a contribution to her exhibition “Chance Encounters” at Ludlow 38, Karin Schneider asked the curator to write a very personal press release. This request, and the text itself, profoundly influenced my working method; it’s a clear example of the deconstruction of an existing form of language, replaced by a more open form, laying bare the core of the relationship between the old and new. For a show I recently made, Karin and I worked together on a piece. She asked me to invent a new way of selling the work. And for this show at Roth, she asked me to write a press release as a contribution to the show. This press release is part of the politics of (dis)placement, where I, Karin, and We may (re)consider painting.

— Heidi Ballet, Brussels 2011.