This exhibition is the first part of a project called Stop Making Sense, and it showcases a group of 500 works, painted during the course of the last two years. The starting point for the series consists of images from a huge variety of sources, initially compiled on a blog that I created on tumblr.com, which is the only nexus between them.
I have used photography as a reference for my paintings on previous series, like all the works under the All Things Must Pass title; they were private photographies taken on ordinary situations, revolving around a specific place or occasion.
In this project I have based my work on other people’s images instead: in August 2011 I started a daily and systematic compilation of images published in hundreds of blogs, republishing them in another one created for this purpose. Initially, this was more or less a covert way of procrastination, like many other curatorial blogs. But the repetition of themes and icons, the bias to specific types of imagery, be it through attraction or revulsion, and often, a mixture of both, drove me to consider using all this alien material in the same way that I treated all my private photography a few years ago. At the end of the day, the difference was relative; my private pictures tell a story and these tell a different one, but have the same or more to do with my own personal experience. Fiction and representation play a crucial role in my own biography, and in the way I see the world. Something that, on the other hand, I believe to be common to almost everybody, whether it happens in a more or less conscious way.
Where I have found one substantial difference is in the selection and recontextualization of an image versus the creation of a new one; a year of compiling images does not equal to a year of working on those same images. A change of context can bring a new meaning, in the same way that rearranging the objects in a home creates a new space. But since my main interest lies more in painting itself than in the commentary, in doing painting, the selection of pictures is not enough by itself. I really do not think this has to do with melancholy, or cultural fetish. To me, painting is not yet replaceable; up to this day no other media can achieve all its range of resources successfully. I emphasize the “yet” in the sentence, because I believe that it’s more than likely that that moment will come. But until it does, what I want to tell, whatever that may be, it is painting.