Recovered from the depths of the online art platform known as Google Art Project, João Enxuto and Erica Love’s Anonymous Paintings betray the ambiguities inherent in the experience of visual art in the age of digital culture. Deliberately selecting the censored cast-offs that are blurred due to copyright restrictions, their project is supposed to emphasize the condition of the art object today as one of contingency, while revealing Google Art Project’s elevation of mass culture as an expansion of corporate culture’s influence over the comparatively “dusty” environs of the world’s great museums.
Filling the exhibition space with a quasi-museum “salon” installation of more than twenty examples of blurred Google masterworks, which, when viewed with Anaglyphic red and cyan glasses appear in 3D, the Anonymous Paintings render subject and author mute, and that seems to be the point of the show.
Derived from the remnants of pixelated art works that have returned to the world of objects, the Anonymous Paintings seem to exist between an artwork as memory, and an assertion of the indispensable nature of a tangible space, where meaning is derived from a conscious encounter between subject and object. All this means that this show might work, at some level, as an installation but too much information is needed to understand it. It just demands too much imagination and information from the visitor and falls into a sort of elitism that this blog usually finds annoying. Just a thought.
Enxuto & Love
until November 24
at Carriage Trade NYC